Hi!

A few of us have been having a discussion in the Forum Feedback & Help section about ubuntuforums use of Google Analytics (GA). http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1976777 In order to be completely transparent, I would like to explicitly state that I'm personally no fan of GA. I have stated my reasons for this here: http://ubuntuforums.org/showpost.php...1&postcount=16

In connection with this I made a discovery that I want to bring to your attention. Perhaps I've misunderstood something, but it seems as if ubuntuforums is violating the TOS of GA!

7. PRIVACY . You will not (and will not allow any third party to) use the Service to track or collect personally identifiable information of Internet users, nor will You (or will You allow any third party to) associate any data gathered from Your website(s) (or such third parties' website(s)) with any personally identifying information from any source as part of Your use (or such third parties' use) of the Service. You will have and abide by an appropriate privacy policy and will comply with all applicable laws relating to the collection of information from visitors to Your websites. You must post a privacy policy and that policy must provide notice of your use of a cookie that collects anonymous traffic data.
http://www.google.com/analytics/tos.html

I've had a look around, and apparently Ubuntuforums has no privacy policy at all. (If there is a privacy policy that I have overlooked, then I apologise in advance.) I'm sure that this is most likely a neglect out of ignorance, because I know that generally Ubuntuforums don't approve breaking the TOS of various services:

“We do not support circumventing TOS, EULA, etc here.”

http://ubuntuforums.org/index.php?page=policy

There is also another aspect of this that I would like to raise. I might be mistaken, but I understand that this forum is hosted on the servers of Canonical, which are located in the EU, right? If that is the case, then the lack of an explicit privacy policy not only would be against the TOS of Google, but it would also be against law:

“In May 2011 it was ruled that EU websites must get user permission to store non-essential cookies on client computers. Website owners were given 1 year to comply before legal action is enforced. This will result in all EU websites having to stop collecting Google Analytics data without the consent of the end user."
https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikiped...s#cite_note-27
See also: http://www.ico.gov.uk/for_organisati...e/cookies.aspx

Finally I would like to point out that GA isn't used at all on Canonical.com nor Ubuntu.com. It is my belief that GA isn't essential to the operation of ubuntuforums, so I would therefore respectfully ask you to consider open source alternatives to GA.

I'm sure your understand my concern, and I would therefore kindly ask you to look into this matter.

Regards,
Dry Lips