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    Privacy & Cookie Policy

    One of our main priorities at hollowshades.com is the privacy of our visitors. Please read our following Privacy & Cookie Policy carefully as it outlines the collected and recorded personal information in regards to use, retention, disclosure, and protection. This policy is not applicable to any information collected offline or via channels other than this website.

    Consent

    By using our website, you hereby agree to our Privacy Policy and agree to its terms. By accepting the Cookie Notice, you hereby agree to our Cookie Policy within the scope of your consent as outlined under Cookies. You may withdraw your consent at any time. When you provide us with your personal information as outlined under Information Collection, you consent that we may store and use it for the purposes outlined under Information Processing.

    Information Collection

    We only collect personal information within your consent and applicable law, restricted to our legitimate interest. The purpose of these collected information will be made clear to you when you are asked to provide them. For example, we collect information when you create an account, subscribe, comment, fill out a form, or participate in other interactive features or services.

    If you contact us directly, we may receive additional information about you such as your name, email address, the contents of the message and/or attachments sent, and any other information you may choose to provide on your own volition.

    We collect anonymous data from every visitor of our website to monitor traffic, measure performance, and fix bugs. Your IP address will be hashed/scrambled and therefore cannot be used to identify you. This blurs our views/visitors measurement but your privacy is more important to us than an accurate statistic. For example, we collect information such as web requests, the response to such requests, the browser type, and timestamp for the request. We do not knowingly use tracking cookies or web beacons (also known as “tracking pixels”).

    If you notice the presence of excluded technologies on our website, please inform us immediately.

    Categories

    As required by the CCPA, the following list outlines a broad set of “categories” of the personal information we may collect based on your consent, applicable law, and services used.

    • Identifiers (contact information, device and online identifiers)
    • Activities (usage of services, like the comment system)
    • Geolocation (broad and based on your IP address for statistics)
    • Audio/Visual (such as your profile picture)

    OAuth 2.0 Authentication

    You may register and log in with an external account (Discord, Twitch, Google, and so forth), given your prior consent. This will create an user profile with your username, email address, profile picture, and unique ID. Any other information is discarded.

    The unique ID serves as link to your external provider. The display name and email address can be changed in your profile; you may also add/remove additional external accounts there. The profile picture will be shown on all of your comments — or a gravatar associated with your email address if you are registered to that service. It will be updated whenever you log in.

    Comments

    If you want to leave a comment on our website, you are required to check an additional consent at least once. This will be stored as cookie. When you submit the comment, we collect the data shown in the comment form in addition to your IP address and browser user agent string to assist spam detecting or exclude undesired individuals.

    If provided, an anonymized string (hash) created from your email address is sent to the Gravatar service to see if you are using it. The Gravatar Privacy Policy can be found here. After approval of your comment, your Gravatar profile picture will be visible to the public in the context of your comment. Your email address will never be publicly shown.

    Your email address can further be used to request an administration email which includes a link to delete all your comments. You can also leave a custom code in order to claim ownership over comments. If you do not provide either, we will likely not be able to verify your claim for any requests regarding access, rectification, or erasure (GDPR/CCPA).

    Subscriptions

    You can subscribe with your email address to selected taxonomies to receive specific updates, from new chapters to blogs. You must verify your subscription with the link sent to your address within 24 hours or your subscription will be automatically rejected. Make sure to check your spam folder or whitelist [email protected] as this email is generated and the sender does not exist.

    You may change or cancel your subscription at any time, either via the unsubscribe link in each notification or with the subscription form on the website. Additional confirmations may be necessary to protect you from fraudulent submits.

    Statistics

    We analyze our traffic to compile anonymized statistics about the number of visitors, page visits, search engine referrals, geolocation (country), the browsers used, and more. These information cannot be used to identify or track you; see Information Collection for additional clarifications. We use these statistics to measure the performance of our content and optimize our systems.

    For example, we know when someone from Germany has viewed a chapter on November 23, 2021, and which browser and operation system was used. Nothing beyond that, and the IP address has been turned into an unrecoverable hash.

    Exceptions

    While we strive to create and maintain a safe and welcoming community, the Internet is filled with malicious individuals that aim to cause strife and harm. We retain the right to revoke our privacy concession to such individuals to protect ourself and our visitors, which is in our legitimate interest. This may extend to denial of features and services, bans, and criminal prosecution in cooperation with the relevant autho­­rities if necessary. This website falls under domiciliary right and we are under no obligation to tolerate malice.

    Retention

    We generally discard personal information once they fulfilled their purpose — as described under Information Processing — and we are not legally required to keep it.

    If you leave a comment, the comment and its metadata are retained indefinitely. This is in order to process any requests, recognize and approve follow-up comments automatically without holding them for approval, and protect us from malicious intents.

    For users that register an account (if any), we also store the personal information they provide in their user profile. All users can see, edit, or delete their personal information at any time (except they cannot change their username). Administrators can also see and edit that information.

    Information Processing

    We use your personal information to render our services within your consent and applicable law, including to:

    • provide, operate, and maintain our website;
    • improve, personalize, and expand our website;
    • manage our relationship with you and respond to requests;
    • protect ourself and you from spam and malicious intents;
    • comply with any regulatory or legal obligations;
    • detect and prevent illegal or prohibited activities;
    • measure performance and benchmark our systems.

    We do not share your personal information without your consent, unless:

    • doing so is appropriate to carry out your own request;
    • the information is public by your own volition, such as comments;
    • it is legally required or necessary to enforce our legal agreements;
    • to detect, prevent, or address criminal, security, or technical issues.

    Information Sharing

    Aside from the legal exceptions listed under Information Processing, we do not share your personal information with third parties. Any third party plugins must comply with our policies. We do not sell your personal information, neither in plain text nor anonymized. We do not practice targeted marketing.

    Security

    We take reasonable steps to protect your personal information from loss, misuse, and unautho­rized access, disclosure, alteration, or destruction. However, you should keep in mind that no Internet trans­mission is ever completely secure or error-free. This goes for your end as well — we cannot protect your system. In particular, emails sent to or from any site may not be secure.

    Social Media

    We feature social media buttons provided by services like Facebook, Twitter, and others. These services are infamous for collecting and selling your data and usually load tracking technologies just by being present.

    In order to prevent this, the buttons are quarantined until you deliberately click on them. Your use of these third party services is entirely optional. This is an informed action of your own volition. We are not responsible for the privacy policies and/or practices of these third party services, and you are responsible for reading and understanding those third party services’ privacy policies.

    Embedded Content

    Articles on this site may include embedded content (e.g. videos, audio, texts, etc.). Embedded content from other websites behaves in the exact same way as if you had visited the other site.

    These websites may collect personal information, use cookies, embed third party tracking, and monitor your interaction with that embedded content, including tracking your interaction with the embedded content if you have an account and are logged in to that website.

    In order to prevent this, embedded contents are quarantined until you deliberately click on them. Your access of these embedded contents is entirely optional. This is an informed action of your own volition. We are not responsible for the privacy policies and/or practices of these third party services, and you are responsible for reading and under­standing those third party services’ privacy policies.

    Cookies

    Cookies are small pieces of data stored as text files on your device when websites are loaded in a browser. They are widely used to “remember” you and your preferences, either for a single visit (“session cookies”) or multiple visits (“persistent cookies”). We use them to enhance your experience and to perform essential functions, such as regis­tering an account and remain logged in. Some parts of the site will not work (properly) if you disable them.

    We use two types of cookies:

    • Essential: These cookies are necessary to perform basic functions and operate certain features. This includes authen­tication for regis­tered users, storing preferences across pages and visits, and ensuring our services run properly.
    • Analytics/Performance: These cookies allow us to evaluate how users interact with our website, including which pages are visited most, how long they stay, and other analytical data. We use these statistics to improve our systems and content.

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    Log Files

    Our website’s host (Hostinger) follows a standard proce­dure of using log files, which is beyond our control. Please read their Privacy Policy for more information. These files log visitors when they visit a hosted website. All hosting companies do this.

    The information collected include IP addresses, browser type, Internet Service Provider (ISP), date and time stamps, referring/exit pages, bytes served, errors, and possibly the number of clicks. The purpose of this infor­mation is for adminis­tering services and sites, handling errors, analyzing trends, and more as stated in their Privacy Policy.

    Local Storage

    Local storage files work similar to your cookies, except that the stored data is not sent to the server when you load the site. They only operate on your device. We use them to store data not required to render the site or perform services, such as your bookmarks and text-to-speech settings. Because of this, you may experience a delay in these features due to them being initialized after the site finished loading. They cannot be shared across devices.

    Your Rights

    Depending on your geographical location and/or jurisdiction, you have certain rights regarding your personal infor­mation granted by data protection laws, such as the European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) or California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA).

    If you make a request to [email protected], we got one month to respond to you. We are allowed to take measures to protect ourselves and our visitors from frau­dulent requests, such as demanding a proof of identity or claim for the requested infor­mation.

    • Access: You have the right to request copies of your personal information. We may charge you a small fee for this service.
    • Rectification: You have the right to request the correction of any information you believe is inaccurate or incomplete. But we are not required to lie for you.
    • Erasure: You have the right to request that we erase your personal infor­mation, under certain conditions.
    • Restriction: You have the right to restrict the processing of your personal infor­mation, under certain conditions.
    • Objection: You have the right to object our processing of your personal infor­mation, under certain conditions.
    • Portability: You have the right to request the transfer of your personal infor­mation to another organization or directly to you, under certain conditions. We may charge you a small fee for this service.
    • You will not receive discri­minatory treatment for exercising your rights.

    Children Under 13

    This website is not intended for children under the age of 13. We do not knowingly collect any personal infor­mation from this age group. If you think that your child provided this kind of infor­mation on our website, we strongly encourage you to contact us imme­diately and we will do our best efforts to promptly remove such infor­mation from our records.

    Changes to our Privacy Policy

    We may change our Privacy & Cookie Policy from time to time, although changes are likely to be minor. However, we will not reduce your rights. You are encouraged to frequently check this page for any changes, summarized under Updates. In the event of larger changes, we will provide an additional notice. Your further use of our website after a change to our Privacy & Cookie Policy will be subject to the updated policy.

    Updates

    • 2022/01/03 — Added section for OAuth 2.0 authentications.