Privacy Policy

Effective date: March 18, 2022

Thanks for entrusting Read the Docs, Inc. ("EthicalAds", "we") with your advertising needs. Holding on to your private information is a serious responsibility, and we want you to know how we're handling it.

The controller responsible for the processing of your personal information in connection with EthicalAds is Read the Docs, Inc., 818 SW 3rd Ave #221-5841, Portland, OR 97204-2405,


The short version

We only collect the minimum amount of personal information that is necessary to fulfill the purpose of your interaction with us; we don't sell it to third parties; and we only use it as this Privacy Policy describes.

If you're primarily interested in how advertising works on EthicalAds, see our vision for advertising.

Of course, the short version doesn't tell you everything, so please read on for more details!

What information EthicalAds collects and why

Information from website browsers

If you're just browsing our website or just browsing a site running ads from our ad network, we collect the same basic information that most websites collect. We use common internet technologies, such as web server logs. We collect this basic information from everybody, whether they have an account or not.

The information we collect about all visitors to our website includes:

  • the visitor's browser type
  • language preference
  • referring site
  • the date and time of each visitor request

We collect this information to better understand how our website visitors use EthicalAds, and to monitor and protect the security of the website.

We analyze potentially personally-identifying information like Internet Protocol (IP) addresses although we generally do not store this information. It is used in real-time for geo-targeting advertising and fraud prevention. Logs containing IP addresses are deleted after no more than 10 days.

Information from users with accounts

If you create an account as publishers who display our ads or advertisers buying ads do, we require some basic information at the time of account creation. You will create your own password, and we will ask you for a valid email account. You also have the option to give us more information if you want to, and this may include "User Personal Information."

"User Personal Information" is any information about one of our users which could, alone or together with other information, personally identify him or her. Information such as a user name and password, an email address, a real name, and a photograph are examples of "User Personal Information."

User Personal Information does not include aggregated, non-personally identifying information. We may use aggregated, non-personally identifying information to operate, improve, and optimize our website and service.

What information EthicalAds does not collect

We do not intentionally collect sensitive personal information, such as personal data revealing racial or ethnic origin, political opinions, religious or philosophical beliefs, or trade union membership, and the processing of genetic data, biometric data for the purpose of uniquely identifying a natural person, data concerning health or data concerning a natural person's sex life or sexual orientation. If you choose to store any Sensitive Personal Information on our servers, you are responsible for complying with any regulatory controls regarding that data.

For publishers where we make a payment, we may need to collect tax information which may contain social security numbers or other User Personal Information as required by law.

If you're a child under the age of 13, you may not have an account on EthicalAds. EthicalAds does not knowingly collect information from or direct any of our content specifically to children under 13. If we learn or have reason to suspect that you are a user who is under the age of 13, we will unfortunately have to close your account.

How EthicalAds uses your information

We may use your information for the following purposes:

  • We use your Registration Information to create your account, and to provide you the Service. For example, as a publisher who shows advertising from our network on your site, we require your name and possibly additional tax information to pay you for showing advertising.
  • We use your Payment Information to provide you with paid advertising service or to pay you for advertising on your own sites.
  • We use your email address to communicate with you, if you've said that's okay, and only for the reasons you've said that’s okay. We do not share your email address.
  • We use User Personal Information to respond to support requests.
  • We may use User Personal Information to invite you to take part in surveys, beta programs, or other research projects, subject, where necessary, to your consent .
  • We use Usage Information and Device Information to better understand how our Users use EthicalAds and to improve our Website and Service.
  • We may use your User Personal Information if it is necessary for security purposes or to investigate possible fraud or attempts to harm EthicalAds or our Users.
  • We may use your User Personal Information to comply with our legal obligations, protect our intellectual property, and enforce our Terms of Service.
  • We limit our use of your User Personal Information to the purposes listed in this Privacy Policy. If we need to use your User Personal Information for other purposes, we will ask your permission first.

To the extent that our processing of your User Personal Information is subject to certain international laws (including, but not limited to, the European Union's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)), EthicalAds is required to notify you about the legal basis on which we process User Personal Information. EthicalAds processes User Personal Information on the following legal bases:

  • Contract Performance: When you create an EthicalAds Account, you provide your Registration Information. We require this information for you to enter into the Terms of Service agreement with us, and we process that information on the basis of performing that contract. We also process your username and email address on other legal bases, as described below. If you have a paid Account with us, we collect and process additional Payment Information on the basis of performing that contract.
  • Consent: We rely on your consent to use your User Personal Information under the following circumstances: when you fill out the information in your user profile; when you decide to participate in a EthicalAds training, research project, beta program, or survey; and for marketing purposes, where applicable. All of this User Personal Information is entirely optional, and you have the ability to access, modify, and delete it at any time.
  • Legitimate Interests: Generally, the remainder of the processing of User Personal Information we perform is necessary for the purposes of our legitimate interest, for example, for legal compliance purposes, security purposes, or to maintain ongoing confidentiality, integrity, availability, and resilience of EthicalAds' systems, Website, and Service.

If you would like to request deletion of data we process on the basis of consent or if you object to our processing of personal information, please contact

How we share the information we collect

We do not share, sell, rent, or trade User Personal Information with third parties for their commercial purposes.

We do not disclose User Personal Information outside EthicalAds, except in the situations listed in this section or in the section below on compelled disclosure.

We do share certain aggregated, non-personally identifying information with others about how our users, collectively, use EthicalAds. For example, we may compile statistics on how advertising performs in different geographic regions.

We do run advertising. We do not run any code from advertisers and all ad images and assets are hosted on EthicalAds servers. We take user privacy very seriously in advertising.

We may use User Personal Information with your permission, so we can perform services you have requested. For example, if you require help integrating our advertising code into your website, we may offer assistance that requires your information.

We may share User Personal Information if we are involved in a merger, sale, or acquisition of corporate entities or business units. If any such change of ownership happens, we will ensure that it is under terms that preserve the confidentiality of User Personal Information, and we will notify you on our Website or by email before any transfer of your User Personal Information. The organization receiving any User Personal Information will have to honor any promises we made in our Privacy Statement or Terms of Service.

We may share User Personal Information with a limited number of third party vendors who process it on our behalf to provide or improve our service, and who have agreed to privacy restrictions similar to our own Privacy Statement. For more details, see our next section on third parties.

Third party vendors

As we mentioned, we may share some information with third party vendors or it may be collected by them on our behalf. The information collected and stored by third parties is subject to their policies and practices. This list will be updated from time to time and we encourage you to check back periodically. When updated, the Effective Date of this Privacy Policy will be updated.

  • Payment processing Should you choose to become an advertiser or publisher on EthicalAds, we will need payment information to process your interaction with us. EthicalAds does not store sensitive payment information directly. This information will be processed by Stripe. For payouts to publishers, the publisher can choose the payment method from a supported list including PayPal, OpenCollective, or others. Those providers will process payments.
  • Site monitoring EthicalAds uses Sentry and New Relic to diagnose errors and improve the performance of our site.
  • Support desk EthicalAds uses Front to manage support requests. If you request support – typically via email – Front may process your contact information.
  • Email newsletter If you sign up for the EthicalAds email newsletter, your email address and name will be stored by Mailchimp. This newsletter is separate from creating an account and signing up for EthicalAds does not opt you in for the newsletter. You can manage your email subscription including unsubscribing and deleting your records with Mailchimp. There is a link to do so in the footer of any newsletter you receive from us.
  • Analytics On our marketing pages and when actually visiting our ad server (but not when simply viewing and clicking on ads), we use Plausible for analytics. Plausible is a privacy-focused analytics provider that does not use cookies or retain any personal data on users.

Our use of cookies and tracking

Do Not Track

EthicalAds supports Do Not Track (DNT) and respects users' tracking preferences. Specifically, we support the W3C's tracking preference expression and the EFF's DNT Policy although our site and ad network function identically regardless of this preference.

For EthicalAds, this means:

  • We do not do behavioral ad targeting regardless of your DNT preference. We target advertising exclusively based on geography and the content of the page.
  • Regardless of DNT preference, our logs that contain IP addresses and user agent strings are deleted after 10 days unless a DNT exception applies.
  • Our full DNT policy is available here.

For more details about DNT, visit All About Do Not Track.


EthicalAds uses cookies to make interactions with our service easy and meaningful. We use cookies to keep you logged in and remember your preferences. If you do not attempt to login to EthicalAds (as a publisher or advertiser for example), you generally do not receive any identifying cookie from us.

A cookie is a small piece of text that our web server stores on your computer or mobile device, which your browser sends to us when you return to our site. The cookies EthicalAds sets -- primarily session cookies for logged in advertisers or publishers and cross-site request forgery prevention cookies -- are essential for the operation of the service. By using our website, you agree that we can place these types of cookies on your computer or device. If you disable your browser or device's ability to accept cookies, you will not be able to log in to EthicalAds. Without cookies, you will still be able to browse our website without logging in.

EthicalAds does not use any cookie-like functionality (eg. identifiers in local storage). Where a cookie is required, we use cookies directly.

How EthicalAds secures your information

EthicalAds takes all measures reasonably necessary to protect User Personal Information from unauthorized access, alteration, or destruction; maintain data accuracy; and help ensure the appropriate use of User Personal Information. We follow generally accepted industry standards to protect the personal information submitted to us, both during transmission and once we receive it.

No method of transmission, or method of electronic storage, is 100% secure. Therefore, we cannot guarantee its absolute security.

EthicalAds' global privacy practices

Information that we collect will be stored and processed in the United States in accordance with this Privacy Policy. However, we understand that we have users from different countries and regions with different privacy expectations, and we try to meet those needs.

We provide the same standard of privacy protection to all our users around the world, regardless of their country of origin or location, Additionally, we require that if our vendors or affiliates have access to User Personal Information, they must comply with our privacy policies and with applicable data privacy laws.

In particular:

  • We collect only the minimum amount of personal data necessary, unless you choose to provide more. We encourage you to only give us the amount of data you are comfortable sharing.
  • We offer you a method of deleting the data we have collected.
  • We also provide our users a method of recourse and enforcement.

Resolving complaints

If you have concerns about the way EthicalAds is handling your User Personal Information, please let us know immediately by emailing us at

How we respond to compelled disclosure

EthicalAds may disclose personally-identifying information or other information we collect about you to law enforcement in response to a valid subpoena, court order, warrant, or similar government order, or when we believe in good faith that disclosure is reasonably necessary to protect our property or rights, or those of third parties or the public at large.

In complying with court orders and similar legal processes, EthicalAds strives for transparency. When permitted, we will make a reasonable effort to notify users of any disclosure of their information, unless we are prohibited by law or court order from doing so, or in rare, exigent circumstances.

Data retention and deletion

EthicalAds will retain User Personal Information for as long as your account is active or as needed to provide you services. EthicalAds only retains User Personal Information for people with accounts on our system such as advertisers or publishers, not for users who view ads across our ad network.

We may retain certain User Personal Information indefinitely, unless you delete it or request its deletion. For example, we don't automatically delete inactive advertiser or publisher accounts, so unless you choose to delete your account, we will retain your account information indefinitely.

If you would like to delete your User Personal Information, you may request it by contacting We will retain and use your information as necessary to comply with our legal obligations, resolve disputes, and enforce our agreements, but barring legal requirements, we will delete your full profile. Some information such as payment history may be retained but User Personal Information will be removed or redacted.

Our web server logs that contain any User Personal Information are deleted after 10 days barring legal obligations.

Changes to our Privacy Policy

We reserve the right to revise this Privacy Policy at any time. If we change this Privacy Policy in the future, we will post the revised Privacy Policy and update the "Effective Date," above, to reflect the date of the changes.

Contacting EthicalAds

Questions regarding the EthicalAds Privacy Policy or information practices should be directed to

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