NOTE: At the time of writing, the advertising solution on Grollige.com is still in development. The explanation below is a reflection of how the advertising solution will function. If anything were to change, this page would be updated to reflect it.
This is going to get a bit technical, but bear with us. We'll try to make it as easy as possible for non-technical people to understand.
First, a brief explainer. You can skip this if you're comfortable that you understand the technology involved.
HOW MUCH OF THIS INFORMATION DO WE STORE?
We don't store these at all. The software which conducts searches does not record them and our server log files are configured to record only the nature of the web request, whether it was served successfully, the size of the web page which was returned and the length of time it took to process the request.
However, remember that both our and your ISPs will be recording the conversation and that this will include your IP address. Also, we may occasionally turn full logging back on temporarily if we need to problem-solve.
We do record search terms, but not in a way which associates them with users. We need to do so for results-caching and AI algorithm purposes.
We simply place them all in a single text file, which is periodically examined.
This file contains the search term, the political category, the order of the requested search (by date or by rank) and the country of origin of the search. The text file carries the time stamp of the most recent addition. Once your search has been superceded (which would usually happen very quickly), there is no longer any record of the time of your search.
These are only recorded along with the search terms, as described above.
We've already made this point, but we'll repeat it here. Although we do not record your IP address, our respectives ISPs do.
We explain this in more detail below, but we don't transmit any information about you to advertisers.
We do format links in a particular way, but only to allow an advertiser to identify Grollige.com as a referrer. This is how a transparent internet advertising model works. Only referrer information is transmitted to the advertiser, no information about the user.
We need to track the popularity of searches in order to have an effective auto-suggestion function. Without doing so, we would either have to forego auto-suggestions altogether or list suggestions by something other than popularity (e.g. alphabetically).
When you conduct a search, it's transmitted to our Auto-Suggest server. This server looks at the search and compares it to a table of other searches which have been conducted and, depending on how many times it has seen that search before, will increase the position of your search in the table.
No information about you (not even your IP address) is recorded.
HOW DO WE USE THIS INFORMATION?
So, we know your IP address (and therefore your rough geo-location), your search term and your political preference. In addition, knowing the time of your search, we can work out your rough local time. We obviously also know the day of the week.
Using this information, we build a temporary profile which we use to select advert(s) to display alongside your search results. No data is shared with advertisers other than that Grollige is the referrer.
Please note the following:
OK...BUT THAT DOESN'T SOUND LIKE WHAT OTHER COMPANIES DO
You're right, it's probably not. Other companies play their cards close to their chests, so we don't know exactly what they record and how they do so, but it's fair to assume that they know more about you than we do.
These companies make a lot of money doing so. Google's annual income for 2019-2020 has been reported at $160 Billion.
If you are interested, here are some examples of unscrupulous ways to identify users without using cookies or asking users to log in to your service. In case you were wondering, we don't use any of them.