Privacy Policy

Welcome to The Open Notebook (, a website dedicated to helping journalists improve their skills. The Open Notebook is owned by The Open Notebook, Inc., a Wisconsin (USA) nonprofit corporation. The Open Notebook (referred to below as “the website,” “we,” “us,” “our”) is the primary controller of your personal information provided to, or collected by or for, the website. By submitting information through The Open Notebook, you agree to the terms of this privacy policy and provide consent for use of your personal information as described by this Privacy Policy.

We recognize that privacy of your personal information is important, and we go to great lengths to protect our users. This document provides information on what types of personal and automatic information we receive, collect, store, and use; and on how we safeguard that information.


Information You Provide

The only personal information The Open Notebook collects about you is the information you provide voluntarily. To register for our email newsletter or comment on posts or pages at The Open Notebook, you must provide contact details (name and email address).

We will keep records of any financial transaction you make with us, but we do not collect, process or store your debit or credit card information. Donations made through this website are processed securely by third-party providers.

We use different third-party vendors to support our services. Services and transaction types, along with vendors and their respective privacy policies, are listed here:

Information Collected Automatically

Like most websites, we automatically collect information about how you interact with the website, including computer, device, and connection information, such as IP address, browser type and version, and operating system; and usage data, such as the pages visited or searched on the site. In addition, we may automatically collect information about the website that you came from or are going to. We use Poptin (privacy policy: to create pop-up messages that point you toward our newsletter, courses, donation options, etc.

This information is aggregated and used to help us plan how we can best serve you in the future (for instance, by providing a geographic distribution of users or the popularity of content).

We also use this automatically collected information to identify and mitigate hacking attempts such as brute force attacks on our servers and passwords. We do this to keep your data safe. We will not disclose any IP addresses unless required by law. We never sell your data to a third party.


How We Use Your Data

Your data allow us to communicate with you by:

  • Sending out email alerts whenever a new post is published or when we have information to share with newsletter subscribers
  • Responding to your comments and questions


Cookies and Advertising

We use cookies to store information, such as your personal preferences, when you visit our site. Cookies are small pieces of information sent by a web server to a web browser which allows the server to uniquely identify the browser on each page. You can choose to disable or selectively turn off our cookies in your browser settings, or by managing preferences in programs that provide this service. However, turning off cookies can affect how you are able to interact with our site as well as other websites.

We use analytics tools to track anonymized use of our site to better understand our visitors and their interests. Those tools are:

Some cookies are placed by third party services that appear on our pages. Embedded content from other websites behaves in the exact same way as if the visitor has visited the other website.

These websites may collect data about you, use cookies, embed additional third-party tracking, and monitor your interaction with that embedded content, including tracing your interaction with the embedded content if you have an account and are logged in to that website. These third parties may include:


Sharing Your Information

We will never sell or give away your personal information to third parties. We do share aggregated information about site traffic with selected partners and funders.



The Open Notebook is a general audience site, but it is not intended for children under the age of 13. We do not intentionally gather information about users or visitors who are under the age of 13, and no one under age 13 is allowed to provide any personal information on the website. If we learn that we have collected personal data from a child under the age of 13, we will delete those information as quickly as possible. If you believe that a child under the age of 13 may have provided us personal data, please contact us at


Your Communications Preferences

If you registered for our email newsletter, you will automatically receive an email any time that new content is posted. That email list is managed through MailChimp and is governed by their privacy policies (

We reserve the right to notify you of changes or updates to the site whenever necessary.

You may unsubscribe at any time through the MailChimp interface or by emailing

If you have an account on this site, you can request to receive an exported file of the personal data we hold about you, including any data you have provided to us. You can also request that we erase any personal data we hold about you. This does not include any data we are obliged to keep for administrative, legal, or security purposes.


Data Retention

We retain your personal information for as long as necessary to provide access to the website and for other essential purposes such as complying with our legal obligations, resolving disputes, maintaining security, detecting and preventing fraud and abuse, and enforcing our agreements.

If you leave a comment, the comment and its metadata are retained indefinitely. This is so we can recognize and approve any follow-up comments automatically instead of holding them in a moderation queue.

The Open Notebook website is backed up periodically on a server managed by our hosting service. We also download website backups periodically and store them securely. These downloaded backups are used solely for repairing or restoring our site in case of unforeseen damage and are retained for a period of 1 year.


Data Security

The Open Notebook uses reasonable measures to safeguard personal information in its possession against loss, theft, unauthorized use, disclosure, or modification. However, because no data transmission over the Internet is completely secure, and no system of physical or electronic security is impenetrable, you agree by using The Open Notebook to assume all risk in connection with the information sent to us or collected by us when you use the website.


Links to Other Websites

The website contains links to other websites or services. We are not responsible for the privacy practices or the content of such websites or services, and you should review the privacy policy of each such website or service to make sure that you are comfortable with it before providing any personal data. For example, charitable donations to The Open Notebook are processed through a third-party payment processor, Stripe (privacy policy: We do not receive any of the credit card information you provide to our third-party payment processor, and all such information is subject to their privacy policies.


Contact Us

If you have any questions, comments, or requests regarding this privacy policy or our processing of your information, please email editor-in-chief Siri Carpenter:

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