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Privacy Policy

Sound On Sound Ltd is part of the SOS Publications Group (collectively, "SOS", "we" or "our"), and we understand the importance of our customers' privacy. This Privacy Policy tells you what information we collect about you when you visit this website (our "Site") or use an online application or mobile device app. Our Privacy Policy also tells you how we use, share and protect this information; what choices you have about how this information is used; and how you can access and update this information.

This Privacy Policy relates to the following SOS-owned websites and mobile device apps:

These sites/device apps are owned and run by the SOS Publications group of companies. Some services and/or features mentioned below may not be available on all our sites/device apps.

For the purposes of this Privacy Policy, "personally identifiable information" means information that identifies and can be used to contact a particular individual, such as name, postal address, email address, and phone number. When other information, such as email newsletter choices, magazine or product purchases, or consumer product preferences, is associated with personally identifiable information, this other information also becomes personally identifiable information.

1. Information SOS Collects

SOS gathers two types of information about users: data that users provide through optional, voluntary registrations on our sites/apps and in certain Competitions; and data SOS gathers through aggregating tracking information derived mainly by counting page views throughout our sites and click-throughs on advertisements. Such information enables us to better tailor our content to readers' needs and to help our advertisers better understand the demographics of our website/app audience. The only situation in which SOS divulges information about an individual user to a third party is with certain Competitions but only with the user's express prior consent (indicated by the user checking a box on the submission form).

Information You Provide Directly To SOS

If you are interested in obtaining information, products or services from SOS, or in participating in certain activities on this Site or via one of our apps, you may need to provide us with information about yourself. For example:

  • If you order a product from us, we ask for your name, postal address, email address, telephone number and your credit/debit card number.
  • If you are ordering a product as a gift for another person, we will ask you for that person's name, postal address and phone number in order to enable us to deliver the gift to the recipient.
  • If you participate in an activity such as a Survey or Competition, we may also ask you to provide other types of information such as gender, personal interests or future buying preferences which we may associate with personally identifiable information that we have obtained about you.

In addition, we may combine personally identifiable information that you have provided to us with other information that is publicly available or that we receive from other sources.

Information We Collect Automatically

In addition to information you choose to provide to us, we also use standard Internet technologies to collect automatically certain additional information. For example:

  • IP Address - When you come to our Site, we collect your Internet Protocol ("IP") address, which identifies the computer or service provider that you use to access the Site. We may use IP addresses to collect information regarding the frequency with which specific visitors visit various parts of our Site. We may combine this information with personally identifiable information that we have collected to make our Site and our communications to you better targeted to your interests.
  • Cookies - Our Site also uses cookies. Cookies are small text files that are stored on a user's computer and allow websites to remember information about users. We use cookies for a variety of purposes in order to enhance the quality of our Site. We use transient (also called "session ID") cookies to provide continuity from page to page. A session ID cookie expires when you close your browser. We also use persistent cookies. Persistent cookies allow our online store and certain other parts of our Site to recognise your browser when you return after your first visit to that part of our Site. Cookies allow us to personalise your return visits to our Site and to save you time during certain activities, such as checking out from our online store. You have the choice to set your browser to accept all cookies, reject all cookies, or notify you when a cookie is set. (Each browser is different, so check the 'Help' menu of your browser to learn how to change your cookie preferences. This site offers some guidance: It is up to you whether to allow us to send you cookies. However, if you do not accept cookies from SOS, your ability to use some areas of our Site will be limited, such as our shopping cart feature. For further information see the SOS Cookie Policy page.
  • Web beacons and other tracking technologies - The Site uses other tracking tools, including web beacons (sometimes known as clear GIFs or web bugs). Web beacons are images on the Site (or in emails we send to you) that help us determine what parts of the Site you have visited, whether you have opened an email that we have sent to you, or otherwise to measure the effectiveness of the Site. These technical methods may involve the transmission of information directly to us or to a service provider authorised by us to collect information on our behalf.

The information we collect automatically may be combined with information that is personally identifiable so that we can make our Site and communications more interesting to you.

Third-Party Online Advertising

Some of the web advertisements you see on this Site and other websites are delivered by third parties who also collect information through cookies, web beacons, and other technologies about your online activities on this and other websites, in an effort to understand your interests and deliver to you advertisements that are tailored to your interests. These third parties also may use information about you that we provide, such as your age, gender, or interests, or the features within the Site that you use, to target and serve advertisements to you and to analyse the delivery of advertisements on the Site. However, we will not provide personally identifiable information about you to these companies, except as otherwise permitted under this Privacy Policy.

Third parties that currently serve ads on our Site, and thereby may collect information about your online activities to deliver tailored ads, include, but are not limited to, DoubleClick ( a Google company). These companies may offer you a way to choose not to have your information used for advertising purposes. These and other third-party companies may also be members of the Network Advertising Initiative ("NAI"), which offers a single location to opt out of receiving tailored ads from member companies. To opt out or to obtain information about the technologies member companies use or their own privacy policies, please visit the NAI consumer opt-out page. Also, through the Digital Advertising Alliance ("DAA"), several media and marketing associations have developed an industry self-regulatory program to give consumers a better understanding of and greater control over ads that are customised based on their online behaviour across different websites. To make choices about interest-based ads from participating third parties, please visit the DAA consumer opt-out page.


Several SOS sites offer free registration to users: Readers' Ads and Forum, for example. By registering, users can enter the sites without having to log in each time; you can vote in forum polls and on our Awards site, and you can take advantage of personalisation (the ability to select content according to a user-supplied profile).

When you register, SOS uses a cookie to store a unique, random user ID. We do not store passwords or any personal information about you. We use this ID to identify you anonymously in our database and to track the pages you visit on our site. Cookies also enable you to enter SOS sites (eg. the Forum) as a member without having to log on each time, and to visit member-restricted "Subscribers-only" areas of the SOS sites. We encrypt the user ID for added security.

During registration the user is required to supply a first name, last name, and password. In addition, the user can opt to subscribe to various SOS email newsletters and choose whether to have his/her email address and/or URL appear in Forum postings.


The SOS sites offer interactive polls to users so they can easily share their opinions with other users and see what the SOS audience thinks about important issues. SOS uses a system to "tag" users after they have voted, so they can vote only once on a particular question. This tag is not correlated with information about individual users.


Users of the Forum discussion groups must register for these services (it is free of charge) in order to post or reply to messages; there is no requirement to register in order to read/browse messages. During Forum registration the user is required to supply a Display Name, Password, valid Email Address, and to state whether or not they are an existing SOS Subscriber.

Forum's "Email This Topic To A Friend" Service

A Forum reader can choose to electronically forward a news story or discussion thread to someone else by clicking the link at the top of that topic. The user must provide their email address as well as that of the recipient. This information is used only in the case of transmission errors and, of course, to let the recipient know who sent the story. The information is not used for any other purpose.


Occasionally SOS conducts user surveys to better target our content to our audience. We sometimes share the aggregated demographic information in these surveys with our advertisers and partners. We never share any of this information about specific individuals with any third party.


SOS regularly runs Competitions in which we request certain personal information. At a minimum, the required information includes name and email address; in some cases, the user must answer mandatory survey questions about a range of other personal data. The information gathered in the entry form is used to verify the entrant's identity, to send the entrant an email notification that their entry has been received, and to contact winners and/or prize recipients.

A user may expressly choose to receive additional information from the Competition sponsor, in which case the user's personally identifiable information is divulged to the advertiser.

Because the rules and terms of each Competition can vary, all information about each Competition is clearly posted on the entry form. All Competitions are conducted in full accordance with English laws.

Usage Tracking

SOS tracks user traffic patterns throughout all of our sites using Google Analytics.

SOS sometimes tracks and catalogues the search terms that users enter in our main site Search engine and Forum search engine, but this tracking is anonymous and never associated with individual users.


A cookie is a small data file that certain web sites write to your hard drive when you visit them. A cookie file can contain information such as a user ID that the site uses to track the pages you've visited. But the only personal information a cookie can contain is information you supply yourself. A cookie can't read data off your hard disk or read cookie files created by other sites. SOS uses cookies to track user traffic patterns (as described above), when you register as a Subscriber, site visitor or Forum member, and when you click an advert.

You can refuse cookies by turning them off in your browser. You do not need to have cookies turned on to use any SOS site, though it does make your experience a more enjoyable one. However, you do need cookies to participate actively in the Forum discussion groups.

See our Cookies and Site Security page.


SOS's online advertising system delivers a cookie to better track ad impressions and click-through rates.

If you've set your browser to warn you before accepting cookies, you will receive the warning message with each cookie.

During the process of delivering an advert to you, SOS does not collect any personally identifiable information about you such as name, address, phone number or email address. However, SOS does obtain some types of non-personally identifiable information such as the service provider you use to connect to the Internet, your browser type, or your computer operating system (Mac OS or Windows, for example). The information collected by SOS is used for the purpose of targeting ads and measuring ad effectiveness on behalf of ourselves and our advertisers.

In some cases, you may voluntarily provide personal information in response to a specific advert (this ad may ask you to fill out a survey or provide your postal code). If this does occur, SOS may collect this information on behalf of an advertiser. This information is used by an advertiser to respond to your request. In addition, SOS may combine this information with other users' information and review it in an aggregate (non-personal) form to understand the type of individuals who view a specific type of ad or visit a particular kind of web site.

2. Information Use

SOS may use information we gather from you for a variety of business purposes, including:

  • To maintain and manage your account, deliver Services that you have requested, and enhance your experience on our Site;
  • To process and track your product or service orders and provide the services you request;
  • To communicate with you about the Site or other products or services in which you may be interested, or to respond to your inquiries or comments;
  • To perform business analyses or for other purposes to improve the quality of our business, the Site, and the products and services we offer; or
  • In accordance with your consent.

Opt-in Email Newsletters

From time to time, the SOS sites/app may offer a free email newsletter to users. Users can also subscribe to the newsletters at the time of registration. SOS gathers the email addresses of users who voluntarily Subscribe. Users may Unsubscribe from this mailing list by following the instructions included at the end of each newsletter they receive.

SOS delivers newsletters, marketing and product offerings via email to Opt-in recipients from our email marketing provider. The email tracking system recognises the URL that was clicked, and records some information to help us analyse response in the form of aggregated results.

SOS also uses the feature of your browser software to set a "cookie" on your system. This allows us to measure and report the click-through rate on email newsletters we send out and better determine future content.

While aggregate counts of click-through patterns may be provided to advertisers on request, an advertiser will never know that a specific user clicked their ad. SOS does not target advertising against specific user information and SOS will not provide specific user information to any third party company.

Other Email Correspondence

If you have paid for a subscription we may from time to time send you emails to keep you informed about your subscription status, for example when it is due to expire together with renewal offers and special discounts.

If you have a complementary subscription for whenever reason, the above also applies.

If you have purchased a product or service from our online store we may send you an email relating to your transaction, for example if we have run out of stock or not been able to collect payment.

Whatever the reason for contacting you by email, it will be specifically to correspond with you and no copy of the message or your email address will be provided to a third party.

3. Information Sharing

We take very seriously our responsibility to maintain your privacy with respect to your information. We will therefore share that information only with the following entities, and only under these circumstances:

  • With entities that provide services on our behalf, including Site development, maintenance and support, payment processing and email distribution only to the extent that these entities need the information to perform their services or as required by law, unless any additional use or sharing of the information is separately permitted under another provision of this Privacy Policy;
  • With identified entities whose products or services you specifically use or request to receive while you use the Site;
  • With other selected third parties so that they may send you promotional materials about goods and services that they offer, but you have the opportunity to opt out of our sharing personally identifiable information about you as described below in the section entitled "Your Choices", and we will not share your email address with third parties for promotional purposes unless you specifically agree to such sharing;
  • When we believe that doing so is required by law, may be necessary to protect any person's property, rights, or safety, or to investigate a potential violation of law, will help to enforce any terms of use or other legal agreement, or will help resolve disputes that arise in the ordinary course of business, or in the event of a corporate transaction, such as a divestiture, merger, consolidation, or asset sale;
  • In aggregated or other non-personally identifiable form; or
  • In accordance with your consent.

4. Your Choices

We understand the importance of protecting our customers' privacy, and we therefore provide you with the opportunity to opt-out of having your personally identifiable information used or disclosed for certain purposes.

You can opt-out of receiving promotional communications from SOS and our Affiliates and our licensees, or request that we not share personally identifiable information about you with third parties for the third parties' marketing purposes. You can change your preferences relating to our email newsletter by logging into your My Account on our site or emailing

Because we plan our communications in advance, it may take several weeks for your request to become effective. If you continue to receive our communications in error after expressing an opt-out preference, please let us know so that we can investigate the situation.

5. Third Party Sites

If you click on or interact with a hyperlink or advertisement that you find on the Site or within our App, you may leave our Site/App or send information to a different website. Our Privacy Policy does not apply to your interactions with other websites, even if you find a link to them on our Site/App, and so you should read the privacy policy of the third-party website provider to see how your personally identifiable information will be treated on its site.

SOS does not control the practices of our advertisers. If you have questions about how one of our advertisers use information about you when you click their ad and go to their content, please contact them directly. (SOS will divulge information only as legally required to comply with governing laws.)

6. Correct/Update Your Personal Information

SOS offers users the ability to correct or change the information collected during registration for any SOS site. The instructions for doing this can be found in the My Account area of the main SOS site. Users may change this information at any time and as often as necessary. Users who are experiencing problems or who have any questions about how our web services work can contact us at

7. Delete/Deactivate Policy

Users may Unsubscribe from any of our email newsletters at any time by following the instructions contained at the end of each newsletter you have subscribed to.

8. Information Security

The security and confidentiality of your information is extremely important to us, and we take a number of steps to safeguard any personally identifiable information or credit card information that you provide to us. We use data encryption technology to help protect against loss, misuse or alteration of your credit card information. Secure Socket Layers (SSLs) encrypt the credit card information sent between your computer and our database, or to our card payment service provider. However, no method of transmitting or storing electronic data is ever completely secure, and therefore we cannot warrant or guarantee that such information will never be accessed, used or released in a manner that is inconsistent with this policy.

9. Credit Card Information

We do not store credit card or debit card details nor do we share customer details with any third-parties.

10. Transfer Of Personal Data Overseas

As the internet is a global environment, collecting and processing personal information may involve the transmission of this data internationally, including outside of the European Union or United States. Therefore, by communicating electronically with us you acknowledge and agree to your personal data being processed in this way.

This Privacy Policy was last updated 09 May 2016. E&OE.