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The TASTE Confidentiality Policy

EMAIL LISTS — If you voluntarily sign up for any of Dr. Tart's email lists, the only place your name and email address will be kept is on the listserv host. This information is NEVER made available to or sold to anybody else; only Dr. Tart has access to it. You may remove yourself from the mailing lists at any time.

TASTE CONTRIBUTIONS — If you voluntarily register to submit accounts or comments to the TASTE web site, your information is processed with a secure server (the kind used to protect credit cards). We have made a great deal of effort to plan for absolute confidentiality for our contributors! Please see further on this page page for more information on this.

WEB SERVER AND 'COOKIES' — This server, like all web servers, knows the computer (IP) routing assigned to visitors. This is necessary for Internet protocol to work—to know where to send the requested information. However, we do NOT know your name, email, or anything else about you, and we do NOT employ any form of software inquiry for such a purpose. We do NOT use permanent or temporary cookies of any kind and we do NOT place anything on your computer.

We respect your privacy and we honor the security of your personal information. We NEVER supply, make public, or sell information from this web site or its affiliated web media. If you have any questions about our security policy or details, please send email to our Webmaster.

Because of the too frequent social stigma unfortunately (and quite erroneously) attached to transcendent experiences, I have taken the following steps to provide as much confidentiality as possible to scientists submitting experiences or commentaries to TASTE that they designate on the submission form should be confidential.

  • The most important thing: my pledge on my personal and professional honor that I will do everything possible to keep identities completely confidential.
  • This pledge will apply to any assistant(s) who may work with me on TASTE.
  • Your real identity (name, email address) will be known to me or my assistant(s) in your initial submissions and in any necessary correspondence in preparing an account for publication — this is necessary as part of restricting posting to scientists only — but this information will be removed from any accounts or commentaries before they are posted on the TASTE web server (even the Webmaster does not see this info).
  • Submissions should be made through our secure online forms. Submissions will not be considered that arrive through anonymous remailing systems. Our web site submission forms for experience and commentaries utilize the secure server protocol (normally used for credit card transactions) to help ensure the security of your submission and the privacy of your personal information.
  • Additionally, your real name and email address information will not be kept on any computer that has an unmonitored connection to the internet: thus this information cannot be hacked short of a physical break-in and computer theft. 
  • Correspondence with you that is necessary before posting an account or commentary will have innocuous email headers, e.g. "Your recent communication." 
  • Once an account or commentary is posted to the TASTE site, real name and email information will, for those who have requested anonymity, be further protected, such as by being locked in a safe and/or encrypted.
  • Please note that some things are beyond my control, however. If someone other than you reads opens your email for you, e.g., anonymity from that person is not possible, so I assume submitters desiring anonymity will email me from a personal account and or instruct me as to the best way to retain anonymity with them. Similar if your email is through a company that has the right to read file copies of your email I cannot prevent that.
  • TASTE offers free email forwarding from our web site for those who may wish to be open to the public's comments on their account. Our Webmaster has a way to do this which will not compromise the privacy of participants; see the TASTE Email page for more information.
If other feasible ways of further protecting confidentiality become possible, I will institute them. If you have any good ideas, let me know.

Charles T. Tart, TASTE Editor

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