Comments Policy

Since user comments are voluntarily submitted, many developers fail to see commenting as collecting personal information. However, even when users willingly give information, you still have obligations to inform them that data becomes public and take measures to protect it.

User comments collect several types of personal information including names, email addresses, and even pictures. This places user comments firmly within the bounds of collecting personal information and makes website owners responsible for disclosing that fact and complying with legal requirements. That includes maintaining a Privacy Policy.

Other information that may be considered personal is IP addresses. Since this number is unique to each device connected to the Internet, it has the potential of identifying individual users. IP addresses can also reveal the general geographic location of a device and that also makes them a form of protected information.

Taking a look at a comment on the WordPress platform reveals the amount of personal information involved in commented. In this example, the commenter’s name, email address, and IP address is all known to the developer.