Like many other Web sites, OnlineFreePianoLessons.com makes use of log files. The information inside the log files includes internet protocol (IP) addresses, type of browser, Internet Service Provider ( ISP ), date/time stamp, referring/exit pages, and number of clicks to analyze trends, administer the site, track user’s movement around the site, and gather demographic information.IP addresses, and other such information are not linked to any information that is personally identifiable.
Cookies and Web Beacons
What are cookies?
Cookies are tiny text files that are stored on a user’s browser. Most cookies contain a unique identifier called a cookie ID: a string of characters that websites and servers associate with the browser on which the cookie is stored. This allows websites and servers to distinguish the browser from other browsers that store different cookies, and to recognize each browser by its unique cookie ID.
Cookies are widely used by websites and servers to provide many of the basic services we find online. If you shop on a website, a cookie allows the website to remember which items you’ve added to your virtual shopping cart. If you set preferences on a website, a cookie allows the website to remember your preferences the next time you visit. Or if you sign into a website, the website might use a cookie to recognize your browser later on, so that you don’t have to sign in again. Cookies also allow websites to collect data about user activity, such as how many unique visitors a page receives per month. All these applications depend on the information stored in cookies.
More info about cookies can be found on this Wikipedia page about cookies and other useful info about key terms on Google’s documentation.
Cookies and Web Beacons from 3rd parties
:: Google Analytics
It lasts for 2 years and is used to distinguish users.
It lasts for 10 minutes and is used to throttle request rate.
A persistent cookie – remains on a computer, unless it expires or the cookie cache is cleared. It tracks visitors. Metrics associated with the Google __utma cookie include: first visit (unique visit), last visit (returning visit). This also includes Days and Visits to purchase calculations which afford ecommerce websites with data intelligence around purchasing sales funnels.
__utmb Cookie & __utmc Cookie
These cookies work in tandem to calculate visit length. Google __utmb cookie demarks the exact arrival time, then Google __utmc registers the precise exit time of the user. Because __utmb counts entrance visits, it is a session cookie, and expires at the end of the session, e.g. when the user leaves the page. A timestamp of 30 minutes must pass before Google cookie __utmc expires. Given__utmc cannot tell if a browser or website session ends. Therefore, if no new page view is recorded in 30 minutes the cookie is expired.
This is a standard ‘grace period’ in web analytics. Ominture and WebTrends among many others follow the same procedure.
Cookie __utmz monitors the HTTP Referrer and notes where a visitor arrived from, with the referrer siloed into type (Search engine (organic or cpc), direct, social and unaccounted). From the HTTP Referrer the __utmz Cookie also registers, what keyword generated the visit plus geolocation data.
This cookie lasts six months. In tracking terms this Cookie is perhaps the most important as it will tell you about your traffic and help with conversion information such as what source / medium / keyword to attribute for a Goal Conversion.
Google __utmv Cookie lasts “forever”. It is a persistant cookie. It is used for segmentation, data experimentation and the __utmv works hand in hand with the __utmz cookie to improve cookie targeting capabilities.
You can find information about opt-outs from analytics here.
:: Google advertising cookies
Google uses different types of cookies to run its websites and ads-related products. Some or all of the cookies identified below may be stored in your browser. You can view and manage cookies in your browser (though browsers for mobile devices may not offer this visibility).
NOTE: in the following paragraphs, “we” and “our” refers to Google’s point of view.
These cookies allow our websites to remember information that changes the way the site behaves or looks, such as your preferred language or the region you are in. For instance, by remembering your region, a website may be able to provide you with local weather reports or traffic news. These cookies can also assist you in changing text size, font and other parts of web pages that you can personalize.
Loss of the information stored in a preference cookie may make the website experience less functional but should not prevent it from working.
Most Google users will have a preferences cookie called ‘NID’ in their browsers. A browser sends this cookie with requests to Google’s sites. The NID cookie contains a unique ID Google uses to remember your preferences and other information, such as your preferred language (e.g. English), how many search results you wish to have shown per page (e.g. 10 or 20), and whether or not you wish to have Google’s SafeSearch filter turned on.
We use security cookies to authenticate users, prevent fraudulent use of login credentials, and protect user data from unauthorized parties.
Process cookies help make the website work and deliver services that the website visitor expects, like navigating around web pages or accessing secure areas of the website. Without these cookies, the website cannot function properly.
For example, we use a cookie called ‘lbcs’ which makes it possible for Google Docs to open many Docs in one browser. Blocking this cookie would prevent Google Docs from operating correctly.
Sometimes an advertising cookie may be set on the domain of the site you are visiting. In the case of our DoubleClick product, a cookie called ‘__gads’ may be set on the domain of the site you are visiting. Unlike cookies that are set on Google’s own domains, this cookie can’t be read by Google when you’re on other sites. It serves purposes such as measuring interactions with the ads on that domain and preventing the same ads from being shown to you too many times.
Google also uses conversion cookies whose main purpose is to help advertisers determine how many times people who click on their ads end up purchasing their products. These cookies allow Google and the advertiser to determine that you clicked the ad and later visited the advertiser site. Conversion cookies are not used by Google for interest-based ad targeting and persist for a limited time only. These cookies are generally set in the googleadservices.com or google.com/ads domain, and have names like ‘Conversion’ and ‘TAID’. Conversion cookie data may also be used in combination with your Google account to link conversion events across different devices you use. Only anonymous data gathered from these cookies is shared with advertisers.
Some of our other cookies may be used to measure conversion events as well. For example, DoubleClick and Google Analytics cookies may also be used for this purpose.
Websites often collect information about how users interact with a website. This may include the pages users visit most often, and whether users get error messages from certain pages. We use these so-called ‘session state cookies’ to help us improve our services, in order to improve our users’ browsing experience. Blocking or deleting these cookies will not render the website unusable.
These cookies may also be used to anonymously measure the effectiveness of PPC (pay per click) and affiliate advertising.
For example, we use a cookie called ‘recently_watched_video_id_list’ so that YouTube can record the videos most recently watched by a particular browser.
Google Analytics is Google’s analytics tool that helps website and app owners to understand how their visitors engage with their properties. It may use a set of cookies to collect information and report website usage statistics without personally identifying individual visitors to Google. The main cookie used by Google Analytics is the ‘__ga’ cookie.
In addition to reporting website usage statistics, Google Analytics can also be used, together with some of the advertising cookies described above, to help show more relevant ads on Google properties (like Google Search) and across the web.
Learn more about Analytics cookies and privacy information and about how Google uses data when you use our partners’ sites or apps.