Policy Page

Policies of this web site.

I suspect the Australian government will eventually want web spiders to declare their policies, and what they are doing with data about other people. Whether this is the case or not, I think it only reasonable to list my policies.

Privacy policy

I don't use cookies, or one pixel gifs. I don't track your URL nor where you came from. I don't ask any of your details. My ISP is keeping logs (they are - it is standard practice), but I didn't ask for access to those logs, nor do I have any current interest in checking logs, except for spot checks on the types of browsers used for access, and for pages not found by visitors. If this changes, I will note any change prominently on my site.

If you email me, I may keep a copy of your email in my backups, and therefore could extract your email address (if I weren't so lazy). If I did have your email address, I wouldn't sell or give it to any person or organisation for spamming or any other commercial purposes. If required by law to hand over computer records I would do so only if a court order was served. If I heard unofficially that I might be required to hand over records, I would attempt to destroy them first.

On the other hand, I have no idea what records or log files are held by Yahoo, Geocities, Tripod, Xoom, Server101, Gisol or anyone else whose web servers I use for their purposes or for use by their advertisers. I formerly used many of these site providers purely because they offer a free site (advertising sponsored is the term, I believe). I wouldn't be at all surprised if the NSA or someone were watching international links and recording the entire universe.

Disabled policy

I don't really have a policy regarding disabled access, in that I am not specifically writing my pages to enable disabled access.

However, everything essential on all on my sites is written in text. Virtually no photo is critical to understanding any of my web pages, and as far as I know I have an alt description on all photos. Almost everything should be able to be read by a Level 2 browser or by a text browser like Lynx. Some pages use tables, however mostly these are fairly simple and usually relate exclusively to tabular data, or positioning photos, not to page layout of text (I'll try adding some patches to make these work in browsers lacking tables). All my pages should be accessible from any browser.

I would therefore expect that blind or partially sighted readers would be able to use their text to speech sythesisers without too many problems. If any handicapped reader does have problems with these pages, please contact me and I will attempt to make appropriate changes.

Site linking policy

In May 2000 I just about swore off ever using the World Wide Wait again, due to the proportion of sites that will not work with an older browser, or that take an excessive amount of time to download on my slow (but very typical) phone access.

In future, I will no longer link with any site that can not be accessed in some form by a text browser on a slow phone line, as may be used by a person with a visual handicap or living in an area with poor communication links. As I check my site, I am removing unacceptable links. I will not link to sites using:

unless I can continue to view without accepting cookies.
Excessive graphics
relative to their text content, or navigation only via graphic links.
if used as a site entry page without an easy bypass.
if a no-frames version of the content is not also available.
Illegal cookies
I do not link to sites using illegal cookies regardless of content.
with no manual link to follow, or that have a 0 refresh time.
unless the site contents can also be accessed with scripting off (I view scripting as a unacceptable security risk in my browser).

Reference browsers will be Opera, with scripting, frames, graphics, and cookies off, and Psion Web browser for a Psion Epoc PDA (I'll change that to a mobile phone if one ever appears that can cope with web surfing).

Spam policy

Spam (unsolicited junk email) annoys me, and the ones doing pyramid selling (which is illegal in Australia) annoy me even more. If I could find any way to reliably block it at source (rather than at my end), and that action weren't more than mildly illegal, I would.

If you send me spam more than once, you can expect me to complain to your ISP (if I can trace you). If you send me spam repeatedly, and I do trace you, I will attempt to blackhole your ISP. If you continue to annoy me with your spam, I will do something to annoy you, and I have no sense of proportion in my response to things that annoy me. If you spam and are advertising a web site, I'd suggest you consider how vulnerable your commercial site is to denial of service attacks. If you are a spammer, and you value your privacy, and your net connections, I suggest you take me off your lists now.

HTML specifications

These pages are pretty standard HTML, as described by the W3C. However since my pages are all hand written, I do make errors. Please feel free to validate any of my pages using the W3C validator at validator.w3.org. If you find errors or think I should change something, please contact me.

My pages are mostly in HTML 4.0 Strict, as described via www.htmlhelp.org/tools/validator/doctype.html

Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) are used to control the layout and appearance of these pages. If you don't like the appearance, just get your browser to use your own style sheet to override my styles.

I generally don't use Javascript or other scripting in these pages. If used, it will usually be for preventing my pages being framed by other sites and similar protective measures. Scripting will never be required to view the contents of my pages.

Frames will never be used in my pages. I think it upsets browser navigation and ease of printing. Also many search engines do not cope well with framed sites.

Any browser is suitable for viewing my pages. The least suitable one is probably Netscape, as some older versions attempt to handle CSS, but do a terrible job of it. As I work out ways around Netscape bugs, I include them, but life is too short to get around every bug. Browsers that ignore CSS will work fine.

Any size display is fine for viewing these pages. They will resize without problems in most cases, so you shouldn't ever need to scroll horizontally. If you have problems, please let me know the details of the browser used and the results.

Download Speeds

Designed not to slow down a download. In late 2000 an APC survey of enthuisiastic computer users in Australia had 91.5% using a modem, 0.6% having ISDN, 7.1% cable, 0.5% satellite, and 0.1% DSL, with 0.2% other. Most people here still have slow connections. In 2005, the percentage of Australians with faster connections than dial up exceeded 50%. Also, more web server space is available to me. I will be adding pictures and graphics to my site.

I hope you have enjoyed www.ericlindsay.com.