OCt.TO Link Shortener

Privacy Policy

& Terms of Service

Privacy Policy & Terms of Service

Privacy Policy

The EU Parliament’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) requires that we spell out a bunch of info on privacy and data, so we apologize for boring you with all these details. For clarification’s sake, we’ll break down our various services under the headings below:

  • Email: Like most humans, we often write letters to folks. Sometimes this is done on paper, but most of the time we do it electronically with this fancy invention called “electronic mail” or “e-mail” for short. Your e-mail address can be used to personally identify you, or perhaps you and your cat if you both share the same email account. We don’t judge. Anyway, assume if you’ve emailed us or if we’ve emailed you that 1) we know who you are, and 2) Gmail (which OCTO uses) has probably added you to our Address Book (i.e. digital Rolodex). We’re organized folks and don’t like deleting our Address Books or inboxes, so assume you’ll be in there for a while. Though, do let us know if you change your email address so we’re not trying to contact someone else who we think is you -- that’ll really confuse that person. If you don’t want us to know you, please don’t email us. We may share your name, contact info, and the things we think you’re working on with people in our network (i.e., the global ocean management and conservation community) when they ask us things like, “I’m setting up a community-managed MPA in the Philippines. Do you know anyone I could ask for advice?” If you’d rather remain a social recluse, please do let us know. You can email us at [email protected] We generally think people like to talk about their work, but it’s good to know when you don’t!
  • Listservs: OCTO runs a bunch of listservs (aka electronic mailing lists), like MarineDebris and MPAList. When you join the listserv, we’ll know your email address and we’ll likely know your name (because you’ve told us). If you post to a listserv, then potentially thousands of people will know this information about you, too. We keep private archives of all the listserv postings that we don’t plan on deleting unless our backups all die, which would be super not cool. Please don’t post to our listservs unless you’re okay with people storing your message for an indefinite period of time, and possibly forwarding that message on to their cousin twice-removed. We track listserv open rates so we know if people are listening to us (which most of you do, it turns out!). It also helps us identify if your email address is inactive so we’re not spending money sending you messages that you can’t read, because you’re not using that email account any more. If you don’t want us to have this info on you, please unsubscribe from our listservs.
  • Newsletters: Our Newsletters are a fancier subset of emails. Kind of like listservs, but much more edited posts that you (hopefully) truly want to read. If you don’t want to read them, please unsubscribe because it literally costs us money to send them to you and we’d rather put that money to best use. When you subscribe to our listservs, we may keep for an indefinite period of time the information you give us (e.g. name, email address, job title, etc.). If you unsubscribe from the listserv, our newsletter system (MailChimp) usually deletes you from our database pretty quickly. If they don’t, email [email protected] and she’ll remove you from our lists. We typically track both opens of, and clicks within, our newsletters so we know what content people like to read. Like, we stopped sending out pay-walled literature in our newsletters because people just weren’t clicking on it (because non-academics don’t subscribe to journals - duh).
  • OpenChannels User Accounts: If you make a User Account on OpenChannels, or any of our other services, we’ll know the info you tell us about yourself. Namely, your name and email address which are both required fields. Don’t tell us in your biography that you hate broccoli if you don’t want us to know that fact. We keep User Accounts around indefinitely. You can cancel your account at any time if you want to -- just login and click the button to cancel your account. If you don’t cancel it, we won’t either, because it seems rude to take things away from people without asking. Please note that User Accounts are shared amongst our OpenChannels Subdomain partners (e.g. the Mare Nostrum Network, Ocean Tipping Points, North American Marine Protected Area Network, etc.), so this data will be shared with them.
  • Webinars: OCTO produces a number of webinars. We normally ask folks to provide us with their name, email address, job title, and organization when registering for these webinars. We typically share the “attendee reports” from our webinar service (Zoom and/or GoToWebinar) with the presenters of the webinar. This allows us all to see who’s asked questions during the webinar so we can follow up with you. It also helps us determine which webinars are popular topics, and which topics we don’t need to cover as often. The data is “processed” by the OCTO Team, and we (and the presenters we share the webinar reports with) do not typically delete this data after any set period of time. Users who object to this data-sharing should not register for OCTO webinars.
  • Google Analytics: We use the free version of Google Analytics on all our web platforms. We’re a non-profit, which means we don’t have the money for the crazy, stalkery, expensive stuff -- also, the crazy, stalkery, expensive stuff is rather crazy, and stalkery, which creeps us out. Google Analytics doesn’t store any personally-identifiable information about you. In fact, it’s against the Terms of Use for Google Analytics for us to match individuals to Google’s anonymized data (not that we could if we tried). We don’t delete the data in Google Analytics. We also tend to share the aggregated anonymous data (i.e. how many hits a page has) with our Board of Directors and our funders. Google Analytics just tells us that someone, in a particular city, did something on one of our websites at a certain time. Google's privacy policy may be viewed here. You can opt-out of Google Analytics by turning on the “Do Not Track” setting in your browser or via other methods.
  • Social Media: OCTO maintains a Twitter account. If you follow/like/re-tweet/beam-up one of our social media accounts, we’ll potentially know the information you publicly share on those platforms. We say “potentially” because we don’t actually do much with our social media accounts other than post content to them. But, occasionally we look people up on social media to “tag” them in relevant posts. Like, if you’ve shared a blog on OpenChannels, we’ll probably tag your Twitter account on the Tweet when we share the blog. If you don’t want us or your grandmother to know what you ate for dinner last Wednesday, then please don’t share that information publicly on social media. That’s TMI, TBH. If you don’t want us to know any of this information about you, please block our accounts on the relevant social networks.
  • Objections: If you object to any of the information above, please email us at [email protected] and let us know. Under the GDPR, you have the right to be forgotten by OCTO. You also have the right to request the data we have on you (which is probably your name, email address, job title, organization, the listservs/newsletters you’ve subscribed to and if you’ve opened those newsletters or not). You also have the right to completely ignore everything we’ve just said – but you don’t have the right to dislike octopuses. We like them too much.

Terms of Service

  1. Acceptance of Terms. These Website Terms of Use, as updated from time to time by OCTO, apply to the OCTO website (“website”). You should carefully read these Terms of Use before using the website. You can review the most current version of the Website Terms of Use at any time at https://www.octogroup.org/terms. This is a legally binding agreement. If you do not agree with these Website Terms of Use, you are not authorized to use this website.
  2. Online Privacy Statement. The use of your personally identifying and non-personal information will be governed by the Privacy Policy found at https://www.octogroup.org/terms. Your use of this website indicates that you have read and agree to the Privacy Policy.
  3. Prohibited Behavior. You are responsible for your behavior in your use of this website and for respecting OCTO's rights in connection with the website and its content.
    • You may not use this website for any purpose or in any manner that violates any local, state, or federal law or regulation or the law or regulation of any foreign government.
    • You may not use this website to post or send any infringing, threatening, defamatory, libelous, obscene, or pornographic material.
    • You may not use or exploit any portion of this website to distribute commercial messages, “spam,” or other unsolicited communications.
    • You may not directly or indirectly, intentionally disrupt or interfere with this website in any manner that may materially adversely affect OCTO.
    • You may not take any action that imposes or may impose an unreasonable or disproportionately large load on the OCTO network infrastructure, as determined by the OCTO Team in its sole discretion.
    • You may not bypass any measures OCTO may use to prevent or restrict access to this website.
  4. Disclaimer of Warranties. The use of this website is solely at your own risk. This website is provided on an “as is” and “as available” basis. OCTO expressly disclaims all warranties of any kind with respect to this website whether express or implied, including, without limitation, implied warranties of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose and non-infringement. OCTO expressly disclaims any responsibility for the actions of any other user of this website. Some states do not allow the exclusion of implied warranties, so the above exclusions may not apply to you. OCTO makes no warranty that this website will meet your requirements, or will be uninterrupted, timely, secure, current, accurate, complete or error-free or that the results that may be obtained by use of the site will be accurate or reliable. You understand and acknowledge that your sole and exclusive remedy with respect to any defect in or dissatisfaction with the site is to cease to use this website. You may have other rights which may vary from state to state.
  5. Exclusions and Limitation of Liability. You expressly understand and Agree that OCTO shall not be liable for any direct, indirect, incidental, special, consequential, or exemplary damages, including without limitation, damages for loss of profits, goodwill, use, data loss, or other losses (even if advised of the possibility of such damages) resulting from any matter related to your use of this website.
  6. Links. This website may include links to other websites. You acknowledge and agree that such links are provided for your convenience and do not reflect any endorsement by OCTO with respect to the linked site or its provider. OCTO makes no representations or warranties with respect to any linked website: Your use of any linked website is solely at your own risk.
  7. Jurisdiction and Venue. This Agreement and the relationship between you and OCTO will be governed by the laws of the State of Washington, without respect to its conflict of law provisions. You agree that venue with respect to any dispute between you and OCTO will rest exclusively in the state or federal courts located in King County, Washington.
  8. Changes. From time to time, OCTO may change this website and/or the Website Terms of Use. If a change to these Website Terms of Use is made, OCTO will post the revised Website Terms of Use on this website. OCTO reserves the right to add to or change this website or cease offering this website at any time and without liability. OCTO reserves the right to refuse to offer access to this website and/or its content to anyone at any time without notice.
  9. Miscellaneous. These Terms of Use constitute the entire agreement between you and OCTO relating to this website. There is no agency, partnership or joint venture relationship between any user and OCTO arising solely through the use of this website. These Website Terms and Conditions of Use are binding upon your successors, assigns, heirs and executors. If any provision of these Website Terms and Conditions of Use is found to be invalid by any court having competent jurisdiction, the invalidity of such provision shall not affect the validity of the remaining provisions of these Website Terms and Conditions of Use, which shall remain in full force and effect. The failure of OCTO to exercise or enforce any right or provision of these Website Terms and Conditions of Use shall not constitute a waiver of such right or condition. Any claim or cause of action arising out of or related to the website or these Website Terms and Conditions of Use must be filed within one year after such claim or cause of action arose. The section titles of these website Website Terms of Use of Use are merely for convenience and will not have any effect on the substantive meaning of this agreement.
  10. Children. If under the age of 18: Some internet sites may ask you to share information about yourself. Before sending any information about yourself over the Internet to OCTO, be sure to ask your parents for permission.
    • If under the age of 13: If you are under the age of 13, your parent/legal guardian will need to verify that they permit you to disclose personally identifiable information via Google Analytics.
  11. Parents/Legal Guardians. OCTO encourages you take an active role in your children’s use of the internet by talking with them about safe and responsible computing before sending any information about themselves over the internet.
    • Children Under the Age of 13: If your child is under the age of 13, OCTO requests that you review the website and follow requested verification procedures before permitting your child to submit personally identifiable information.
  12. Termination. OCTO may block, suspend, or terminate your use of the website at any time for any reason. Reasons OCTO might do so include, but are not limited to, the following: (a) your breach of this agreement; or (b) OCTO believes that your actions could cause financial loss or legal liability to OCTO or other users of this website; or (c) routine network maintenance affecting all users; or (d) your use of this website or service in a manner that violates the law or OCTO's policies.
  13. Contact Information. If you have questions about these Terms of Use, you should contact the OCTO Team at [email protected]