The websites are not directed at children under the age of 13. If you are under 13, please do not provide any personal information on the websites.
What information do we collect on our websites?
We collect both personal information and aggregated information on our websites. We discuss our collection and use of different kinds of information below.
You do not have to provide personal information to use any of our websites. However, particular services provided through the websites may require that you furnish personal information. We collect such personal information only when you provide it to us – for example, in answering surveys; entering contests and sweepstakes; registering to receive electronic newsletters, television listings and other materials; participating in message boards, book clubs, and quizzes; purchasing items from our stores; and taking part in other promotional opportunities. You may be asked to provide your contact information (such as your name, postal address, telephone numbers and/or email address), financial information (such as credit card numbers) and demographic information (such as your postal code, age, or income level) in connection with your use of such services.
Contact information is used to respond to your inquiries; to notify you if you have won a contest or a quiz and to send products and services ordered from our websites. You also may receive periodic mailings from us with information on new products and services, updates to our websites, or upcoming events.
We may share our user mailing list with reputable and carefully screened firms for marketing or promotional purposes. We may also forward information to you regarding third party products or services, without disclosing your personal information to such third parties. You may opt out of having your contact information as part of our mailing list at any time (see the Opt-Out Section below).
You may be asked to provide information (occupation, hobbies, short biography, your homepage) in creating a user profile in our public forums. If you choose to provide this information, it will be accessible to other users of the website (See Public Forums Section below).
We use IP addresses to calculate website usage levels. Whenever you are on the Internet, a number (an IP address) is automatically assigned to your computer. This number is identified and logged automatically whenever you visit our websites. Collecting IP addresses is standard practice on the Internet, and is done automatically by many websites.
Demographic information, as well as usage data calculated from logging IP addresses, is shared with advertisers and third parties only on an aggregated basis. (See the Aggregated Information Section below.)
We may also disclose personal information if we believe that we are required to do so (i) by law, (ii) to comply with legal process or governmental requests, (iii) to enforce our Terms of Service, or (iv) to protect the rights, property, or safety of this website, its users or the public.
We work with third parties who provide services including but not limited to website hosting, order processing and fulfilment, credit card clearance, e-commerce affiliation, data analysis, emailing and other services of an administrative nature. Personal information, including financial information, is shared with such third parties for the purpose of providing such services.
We collect information through our websites relating to traffic levels on our websites – for example, the total number of users visiting particular pages. We also collect and analyse aggregate demographic information, the results of surveys as well as information relating to the search functionality on the websites.
Aggregated information is helpful to us for improving the services we offer and for marketing purposes. We may share aggregated information, which does not personally identify you, with our advertisers, business partners, or other companies.
Cookies are data that a website transfers to an individual’s computer for record keeping purposes. Cookies, which are an industry standard used by most websites, can facilitate a user’s ongoing access to and use of a site. Cookies do not cause damage to your computer systems or files.
We make discussion areas, message boards, and/or book clubs available to our users. Please remember that any information that is disclosed in these areas becomes public information, and you should exercise caution when deciding to disclose your personal information.
To register for the public forums, you will need to select a screen name and provide your email address. A password is required to log into the public forums. Depending on the site, you will either select your own password at the time of registration or will receive an email notification from us with a randomly generated initial password.
Whenever you contribute to a public forum, your screen name, linking to your profile, will automatically appear with your post. When you log into the discussion forums, you will be able to set up your profile, which you may edit at any time. You have the ability to change your password within the profile. Your password will never be visible to other users as part of your profile. Providing information as part of the profile is entirely optional.
If you have indicated as part of your profile that you would like to accept private messages, other users will be able to communicate with you by sending you “private messages,” without actual knowledge of your email address.
On all other public forums on our websites, information that you provide as part of your user profile, except your password and email address, will be accessible to other users of the site by clicking on your screen name associated with any of your postings. However, you may also opt to display your email address with your posts.
Our websites are general reader sites. We do not direct any of our content specifically at children under thirteen (13) years of age. We run classroom sites as educational tools for teachers, where contests encouraging submissions of children’s essays are occasionally announced. We announce and post personal information (such as name and home town) of contest winners after receiving consent from the children’s parents. We will not knowingly collect information from children under the age of 13 without first gaining consent from a parent or guardian. We will not use this information to contact the child for other purposes, distribute this information to third parties, or give the child the ability to post publicly or otherwise distribute personally identifiable information without a parent’s or guardian’s consent.
Third-Party Ad Serving
We have security measures in place to protect against the loss, misuse, and alteration of the information under our control. Any time we ask for a credit card number we transmit that credit card number in an encrypted format. We use industry-standard, SSL (secure socket layer) encryption. Unfortunately, no data transmission over the Internet can be guaranteed to be 100% secure. As a result, while we strive to protect your personal information, we cannot ensure or warrant the security of any information you transmit to us or from our online products or services, and you do so at your own risk. Once we receive your transmission, we make reasonable efforts to ensure its security on our systems.
Links to Third Party Sites
Our websites may contain links to third-party websites. The linked sites are not under the control of this website, and we are not responsible for the privacy practices or the contents of any linked site, or any link contained in a linked site. We are providing these links only as a convenience, and the inclusion of a link on our websites does not imply endorsement of the linked site by this website.
We reserve the right to transfer any and all information that we collect from users of the websites to a third party in the event that we sell or transfer substantially all of our assets related to the websites to such third party.
You may inform us if you wish to remove your personal information from our database, and we will endeavor to comply with your request as soon as reasonably possible. Please note that we may need to retain certain information for record keeping purposes, and there may also be residual information that will remain within our databases and other records. We reserve the right, from time to time, to re-contact former users of our websites.