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More detail in new Twitter privacy policy

5/30/2012

Twitter recently emailed users, alerting them to changes in the site's privacy policy and terms of use.

The new policy is more detailed than the one it replaced, giving more information about what data Twitter collects, how it uses the data and how long it stores the data. For example, Twitter collects log data of users when they engage with the site and stores it for 18 months. This data includes browser type, cookie information and user location.

The policy also defines widget data and explains how Twitter uses it.

"We may tailor content for you based on your visits to third-party websites that integrate Twitter buttons or widgets," the policy states. "When these websites first load our buttons or widgets for display, we receive Log Data, including the web page you visited and a cookie that identifies your browser ('Widget Data') … While we have the Widget Data, we may use it to tailor content for you, such as suggestions for people to follow on Twitter."

Users can opt out of this feature via Twitter's settings menu or by clicking the Do Not Track button on certain web browsers, including Microsoft Internet Explorer 9.0+ and Google Chrome 17.0+.

Julia Campbell, founder of J Campbell Social Marketing, responded favorably to the revised policy in a May 21 blog post. She said Twitter looks good in comparison with Facebook, which is more opaque about user data issues.