In order to create a Network using the Ning Platform, Network Creators must register for account credentials. When you register for account credentials, Ning collects certain Personal Information, including your name, email address, and a password that you select. In addition, Network Creators must provide their credit card or other payment information and telephone number (for customer support purposes). Ning or its third party payment providers use this Personal Information related to your billing information solely to administer your services on the Ning Platform and to process your transactions including your purchase of Ning Product Plans, Support Services, and upgrades.
Network Creators and Third Party Application Developers might use the Ning Platform to collect, use, and retain all information, including Personal Information and Network Data, that is disclosed and uploaded by Members in connection with their use of Networks. “Network Data” means all data collected from a Network or Member and includes registration information, profile data, answers to Network profile questions, all Content and other information contributed by Members, and statistical information and analytics relating to usage and interactions within the Network. When a User signs up to become a member of a Network, he or she is providing Personal Information to that Network’s Network Creator and such Network Creator and its designated administrators will have access to all Personal Information and Network Data associated with any such Network. In addition, Network Creators will have the ability to reset Member passwords in the event that a Member loses or can’t remember it.
Network Creators and Third Party Application Developers might also collect additional types of Personal Information. For each Network you use, you should check with the Network Creator regarding its policies governing its collection, use, and disclosure of Personal Information. Additionally, for each Third Party Application that you add to your Network or your profile, you should check with the Third Party Application Developer regarding its policies governing its collection, use and disclosure of Personal Information.
Like most web-based services, Ning automatically receives and records information on our server logs from your browser when you use the Ning Platform. We may use a variety of methods, including clear GIFs (also known as “web beacons”), and “cookies” to collect this information. The information that we collect with these automated methods may include, for example, your IP address, Ning cookie information, a unique device or user ID, browser type, system type, the content and pages that you access on the Ning Platform, and the “referring URL” (i.e., the page from which you navigated to the Ning Platform).
A third-party research company, Full Circle Studies (ScorecardResearch) uses web beacons and cookies to collect information about your use of Ning. The web beacon and cookie used by ScorecardResearch is unable to identify the user visiting a page, and there is no personally identifiable data transmitted by, or linked to, the web beacon or cookies. You can learn more about ScorecardResearch’s privacy practices, and may opt-out from its browser-level tracking, here. Also, please be aware that other third parties, including advertising servers, advertising networks, web analytic services (such as Google Analytics) or Third Party Application Developers may set cookies or use other means of passively collecting information about your use of their services on the Ning Platform. We do not have access to, or control over, these cookies or other means of passive data collection. You should consult the respective privacy policies of these third parties. We cannot control the activities of such third parties.
We do not provide your Personal Information to these third-party ad servers or ad networks without your consent. However, please note that if an advertiser asks us to show an advertisement to a certain audience or audience segment and you respond to that advertisement, the advertiser or ad server may conclude that you fit the description of the audience that they were trying to reach.
You may click here to visit the Network Advertising Initiative’s opt-out page, where you can learn more about its member companies’ practices and to opt out from the collection and use of information by its member companies.
We may use Personal Information to operate, provide, improve, and maintain the Ning Platform, and our other services and systems, and to develop new products and services; to prevent abusive and fraudulent use of the Ning Platform and our other services and systems; to personalize and display advertisements (via our own advertising engine or server) and other content on the Ning Platform; to send you administrative messages, and information about Networks, content, and Ning services in which we believe you may be interested; and for other administrative and internal business purposes.
We may provide Personal Information to third parties for their use in performing internal business functions (e.g., payment processing, maintenance, security, data analysis, email transmission, or data hosting) on our behalf.
We may disclose Personal Information if we have a good faith belief that doing so is required by a subpoena or other judicial or administrative order or otherwise required by law. Additionally, we may disclose Personal Information where we, in good faith, deem it appropriate or necessary to prevent violation of the Ning Terms of Service, or our other agreements; take precautions against liability; protect the rights, property, or safety of Ning, any individual, or the general public; maintain and protect the security and integrity of our services or infrastructure; protect ourselves and our services from fraudulent, abusive, or unlawful uses; investigate and defend ourselves against third-party claims or allegations; or assist government enforcement agencies.
In the event of a change in ownership, or a merger with, acquisition by, or sale of assets to, another entity, we reserve the right to transfer all of your Personal Information, including email addresses, to that entity. We will use reasonable efforts to notify registered users of such a transfer (by a posting on our home page, or by email to a Member’s email address that was provided to us, as chosen by us in our discretion).
We use industry standard security measures to protect against the loss, misuse, and alteration of Personal Information under our control. Although we make good faith efforts to maintain the security of such Personal Information, we cannot guarantee that it will remain free from unauthorized access, use, disclosure, or alteration. Further, while we work hard to ensure the integrity and security of our network and systems, we cannot guarantee that our security measures will prevent “hackers” or other unauthorized persons from illegally accessing or obtaining this information. We do not assume any liability to third parties whose information you include in your address book, contact list or any similar items, or which you post or transmit in any Content on a Network. To help maintain the security of your account credentials, please keep your password secure. If Network Creators submit certain sensitive data to Ning, such as your payment information, we encrypt that data using SSL encryption.
If we learn of a security breach, we may attempt to notify you electronically so that you can take appropriate protective steps. By using the Ning Platform or providing Personal Information to us, you agree that we can communicate with you electronically regarding security, privacy, and administrative issues relating to your use of the Ning Platform. If a security systems breach occurs, we may post a notice on our homepage, or elsewhere on the Ning Platform and may send email to you at the email address you have provided to us.
The Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (“COPPA”) protects the online privacy of children under 13 years of age. We do not knowingly collect or maintain personal information from anyone under the age of 13, unless or except as permitted by law. Any person who provides Personal Information through the Ning Platform represents to us that he or she is 13 years of age or older. If we learn that Personal Information has been collected from a user under 13 years of age on or through the Ning Platform, then we will take the appropriate steps to cause this information to be deleted.
If you are the parent or legal guardian of a child under 13 who has become a Member, please contact Ning at privacyinfo [at] ning [dot] com to have that child’s account terminated and information deleted.
The following are some resources that may help parents and legal guardians in monitoring and limiting your children’s access to certain types of material on the Internet. While we do not endorse these products, we provide information about them as a public service to our community.
You may, at any time, update, correct, or delete certain categories of Personal Information that you have provided to us by signing in to your Network (and Ning.com if you are a Network Creator) and updating the Personal Information. Additionally, you may update, correct, or delete certain categories of Personal Information within your My Pages by following the directions here.
Additionally, any User may end its use of the Ning Platform at any time and for no reason and request deactivation of their account by contacting us at privacyinfo [at] ning [dot] com or at the address set forth below in the “Contacting Us” Section. If you are a Network Creator, you have the option to take your Network offline by signing in to your Network, clicking on “Privacy” from the “My Network” page, and clicking “Take Offline.” After a Network is taken offline, only the Network Creator can access it. All other visitors to the Network will see a webpage with this notice. Network Creators may also delete their Network, including all Content and Network Data therein, by contacting us at privacyinfo [at] ning [dot] com or at the address set forth below in the “Contacting Us” Section.
We will respond to any request made under this Section as soon as reasonably possible, but in any case, no later than 30 days following your request.
Additionally, even if you update or remove Personal Information that you have provided to us, your Personal Information may be retained in our backup files and archives for a reasonable period of time for legal purposes.
As a Network Creator, you control certain privacy settings on your Network (known as “Network Privacy Settings”). Network Creators can edit these settings at any time by signing in to your Network and clicking on “Privacy” from the “My Network” page. Network Creators can choose from the following Network Privacy Settings:
To further enhance Network privacy, Network Creators can set “Private – Only Invited People” (as explained above), and then also check the “Approve new members before they can join” box on the “Controls” page. The “Controls” page is located under “Members” on the “My Network” page.
Additionally, Members or Network Creators have their own individual privacy settings for certain categories of information, such as profile information, list of friends and content that you post. To adjust individual settings, sign-in and click on “Settings” in the right hand column. This will take you to a “My Settings” page, where you’ll find a “Privacy” link on the left hand side. You have the following individual privacy options:
Even if you’ve changed your privacy settings as described above, certain portions of your basic profile page (such as your name and profile photo), will always be visible to people who can access the Network. The remaining portion of your basic profile (such as gender, location and age/birthday), can be hidden or disabled by accessing the “Profile” section of your Settings page.
Regardless of the individual privacy settings selected by a Member, please note that Network Creators and their designated administrators will still be able to view that Network’s profile pages, lists of friends and content in full.
We may send you administrative messages, and updates regarding your account, the Ning Platform, and our services, by email. Network Creators may also send administrative or promotional messages to the extent permitted by applicable law and the Ning Terms of Service. You may indicate your preferences regarding certain administrative email messages by following the directions here. Additionally, you can choose to opt-out of receiving messages from Ning or a Network by following the directions on the bottom of the email message you receive.
The Ning Terms of Service prohibit Users from engaging in any activity involving the sending of email in violation of applicable law, including CAN-SPAM and other laws regulating unsolicited commercial email. Violations of these policies may result in immediate termination of service and legal action against any senders or initiators of such messages.
The Ning Platform, and Networks, may contain links to websites and services provided by third parties. Any Personal Information you provide on third-party sites or services is provided directly to that third party and is subject to that third party’s policies governing privacy and security. We are not responsible for the content or privacy and security practices and policies of third-party sites or services. We encourage you to learn about third parties’ privacy and security policies before providing them with Personal Information.
Network Creators can enable “Social Sign-In,” which allows Members to use their account credentials from certain third-party services (such as Facebook, Google or Yahoo!) to sign in or sign up for a Network. As part of the sign-up process, the third party service will transmit certain information used to complete the new Member’s profile page, including name, email address and, where available, profile photo, birthdate, gender and location. Any of the transmitted profile information, except for email address, can be updated or changed during sign up. The email address can be changed after sign up.
Network Creators can allow Members to share content via Facebook, Twitter and Share links. As a Network Creator, you can disable any or all of these options by going to the “Controls” link under the “Members” heading on the My Network page. For more details, please see here. If the sharing feature is enabled, Members can share content or post status updates to their Facebook or Twitter accounts directly from a Network. Please see here for more details on sharing content via Facebook and here for sharing content via Twitter.
We offer publicly accessible blogs (such as the Ning Blog) and certain informational Networks (such as the Ning Creators Network) . You should be aware that any information you provide in these areas may be read, collected, and used by others who access them.
From time to time and with your prior consent, we may seek and post a testimonial (along with your name) regarding your experiences with the Ning Platform. If you want your testimonial removed, please contact us any time by contacting us at privacyinfo [at] ning [dot] com or at the address set forth below in the “Contacting Us” Section.