Welcome to SPOTTERON

The following terms of use and our privacy policy govern your use of the SPOTTERON platform and its software, apps, products, services and technologies, and your interaction with the partners, who administer a project you contribute to. If not stated expressly otherwise, only these terms apply.

Please read these terms of use carefully.

Mission:

SPOTTERON provides smartphone applications, web applications, websites and media for partners, based on the service of the SPOTTERON platform and as associated media like video, animation or data visualization or homepages for projects and initiatives. We are constantly extending and improving the platform’s set of features and possibilities to create a topic related network of project`s apps, websites, tools and media, which offers innovative and unique features to users and project partners alike.

Service:

The service includes all the SPOTTERON features, applications (both smartphone and web applications), technologies, products and software that we provide and constantly evolve to create a user-driven platform for custom projects in the fields of science, environmental protection and social agendas in collaboration with partners from institutions, organizations or companies.

SPOTTERON provides the service to enable these partners to run own standalone smartphone apps on a common platform. For users like yourself, the SPOTTERON service enables you to participate in such projects by providing geo-located data points (aka “spots”) or answers in questionnaires in apps or in interactive web-applications and be part of a topic related community.

The apps and software on the SPOTTERON platform are designed for sharing observations, user interactivity and to create communities in topic related environments. By nature, such applications and software allow you to submit user-generated content, for which you are fully responsible including its compliance with the applicable laws and regulations of the European Union.

You may only use the service if:

  • you agree with these terms of use and the privacy policy as a binding contract,
  • you are not a person prohibited to receive services under the laws of the applicable jurisdiction,
  • you are at least 18 years old or if you provide a written statement of permission by your parents / legal guardian when you are between 13 and 18 years old at registration,
  • you have not prior violated our terms of use nor have a prior account which has been disabled for violation of the law, of this agreement or any additional agreements with the partner(s) of a project in the past

If you are accepting these terms on behalf of a government or non-government organization, company or other legal entity, you represent and warrant to be authorized to do so. 

Use with responsibility, use with caution

Please always take care of your surroundings and never put yourself into danger while using the service or any of the applications. Never record or contribute observations in unsafe conditions and always take care of your safety first. SPOTTERON or the partners of a project can not be made responsible for any damage or accidents occurring while using an application. 

The service is not intended to be used as a navigation tool or for emergencies. Please always contact the authorities directly in dangerous situations. The use of any content, locations, maps or materials on the service by you is completely at your own risk.

Partners

The projects on the platform are administered by one or more partner organizations, which are displayed in every app in the information section (“About [project name]” in the main menu). The partner organizations have access to the contributions (aka “spots”) and all publicly available information you share in the application of a project like your comments or descriptions.

Every partner has agreed to use the service only in the way as stated in the SPOTTERON partner agreement.

Additional terms & conditions of partners

Projects on the SPOTTERON platform can have the necessity to agree to additional terms of use on a per-project basis. Please read them carefully, by using the apps of the listed projects on your own device you give your informed consent to accept these additional terms of use.

Custom terms of use are currently in effect in the following projects:

CoronaReport: read terms of use
Partner: Scottish Collaboration for Public Health Research and Policy (SCPHRP), University of Edinburgh, 5 Forrest Hill, EH1 2QL, UK

Cane Toad Challenge: read terms of use
Partner: Queensland Brain Institute | Institute for Molecular Bioscience, The University of Queensland, Brisbane Qld 4072 Australia

With your use of the projects of these apps, you enter a binding agreement with the partner organization(s) of the according to project to completely fulfil the partner’s terms stated and to hold SPOTTERON indemnified for all parts of that agreement.

Your user account

With our service, we want to connect both people with common interests and scientist or project teams. To contribute to projects on SPOTTERON, the following user account types are available:

* Personal account
You can register a personal user account either by choosing Miss, Mister or other at the registration

To use the service of SPOTTERON with a personal user account, you must be at least 18 years old or at least 13 years if you provide a written parent or guardian consent to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. in form of a signed document by the parent/guardian as PDF or Doc file.

* School Class
If you are a teacher/organizer of a school group, you can register a school class account. Your pupils can use a school class account login provided by you to login in any of the project’s apps on multiple devices. No personal data of single users is processed when doing so. To register a school class account, please provide your name and birthday as the responsible representative to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with the username given in the email. You agree to always monitor the contributions of the organization’s team in the app and delete or report contributions with sensitive data or cases of abuse of the service.

* Organization
You can register an account for your organization, which can be used by multiple users on different devices. To register an organization account, please provide your name and birthday as the responsible representative to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with the username given in the email. You agree to always monitor the contributions of the organization’s team in the app and delete or report contributions with sensitive data or cases of abuse of the service.

What personal data we store:

You do not have to provide your real name in your user account, we encourage you to use pseudonyms as username and display name. You can also add a profile image (aka “avatar”) to your user profile. To comply with the EU GDPR, we also log changes and save requests of personal data in-app and your IP address via log files. Our main policy and procedure document for data protection do meet the standards and requirements of the EU GDPR. Accountability and governance measures are in place to ensure that we understand and adequately disseminate and evidence our obligations and responsibilities; with a dedicated focus on privacy by design and the rights of individuals.

We do not implement permanent third-party tracker software like analytics or external scripts from social media buttons in any of the apps running on the SPOTTERON platform, nor do we build data profiles about yourself or any other user on the platform. We do not monetize your personal data or share it with third parties for that purpose.

User data (Basic profile information)

This type of personal data includes information for your login and user account. The login information includes your email address, username and your date of birth if provided and we store your IP address and date of registration for logging purposes. We do not provide this personal data to the partners of a project, you data is safe with us. The only exception is if you agree in a separate dialogue box at the first app start, that you want to receive news and updates by the project via email (aka newsletter subscription). If you give your consent to that, we provide your display name if given and email address to the project.

Extended user information

To personalize your user profile, which is findable by user search and linked in the authorship badge of your contributions, you can add additional optional information about yourself like a display name, a personal quote, your interests, birthday, education, tools you use for observations, workplace, city, postcode or country. All these fields are optional and by using them you give your consent that your inputs are processed by us. This extended information is displayed publicly in your user profile to represent yourself better if you choose to.

For school class and organization accounts, you can optionally provide non-personal information about the size, name and structure instead of personal user data.

While the basic information (first registration step) is mandatory for login, all the extended information is optional. We provide a user search in-app to find new connections and friends, using the optional extended information if you have decided to provide it for better results. 

Consent to process your personal data

With creating your user account and agreeing to these terms of use, you give your consent to allow us to display and process your personal data and display your information publicly in the apps and/or websites running on the SPOTTERON platform. 

Updating your personal data:

You can always edit your user profile information to update your personal data in the smartphone apps and interactive web-app of any of the projects running on the SPOTTERON platform.

Requesting your personal data

In the apps and interactive maps of a project you have been active in under “Settings,” you can find a link to request and download a machine-readable copy of your contributions and the personal data we have stored about you in a CSV format.

Deleting your personal data aka “Right to be forgotten”

In every application, you can find a form for deleting your personal data from our database under “settings” (main menu). When submitted, we completely erase your personal data and anonymize your contributions in the project.

Using the service without a user account

You can always use the applications of the projects on the SPOTTERON platform without registering or logging in for browsing, displaying and reviewing of the spots and contents - however, if you want to participate actively or make contributions, you have to create your own user account or log in to be able to be part of the community.

Exceptions are projects, which by their partner’s own choice offer the option to also contribute anonymously. By using the service without an account, all your contributions and media uploads are assigned to an anonymous user account. By contributing anonymously in these projects, you agree that you have obtained all necessary rights and that you respect privacy and intellectual property laws.  Please note that your IP address and date of the contribution are still recorded for documentation purposes. 

Multiple projects - one login

Once you have created your own user account, you can use it in all project apps on the SPOTTERON platform as your login. With your first contribution, you agree that your username and user ID will be shared with the project’s partners for research and analysis of the collected data-set and its contributions. Some projects have additional terms of use, which are displayed at the first start of a project’s app. You have to agree/give your consent to that projects to be able to contribute to them.

Contributions

You can record and upload your observations aka “spots” and put them in the applications on the map to increase the knowledge and help to create a data-set about a project’s topic. Your contributions are all displayed publicly and are accessible via the applications of a project, they are submitted to, along with your authorship information (username and/or optional display name). If you participate actively in a project you agree that your public personal information provided and your contributions are visible to all visitors and registered users.

When making a contribution, you always have to respect privacy laws, intellectual property laws, the personal rights of others and geo-spatial ownership or restrictions.

Geo-spatial restrictions

You are not allowed to share or localize any information or media, which is in conflict to the privacy of others or which is in the range of areas with restricted access or can be considered as an invasion of privacy. When you upload a new contribution, you take full unlimited responsibility and you confirm to legally be able to put that information on the particular location on the map.

Contributing pictures and media

You can share and upload photos, pictures, text like descriptions and comments and other media objects when submitting a new contribution, in your user profile or in other sections of the service. All these creative works are licensed under Creative Commons Zero (CC0) and you agree that you have all necessary rights to be able to share the content under this license. 

You are not allowed to contribute material, which infringes the intellectual property of any third party or which is protected by any copyright. 

You further agree not to contribute material, which contains hate-speech, sexism, racism, any forms of discrimination, explicit nudity, forbidden symbols, extreme political messages, public shaming, invasion of privacy, nor any forms of advertising beside for documentary purpose.

We reserve the full unlimited rights to delete or modify any community content anytime if a violation of these restrictions can be suspected. 

When sharing media objects, which contains the images or sounds of other people make sure, you have the permission by every person included doing so. This is best done in the form of a written statement, signed by the person(s) kept for documentation in case of a complaint. 

You agree to be fully responsible for the legality of your contributions and that you have obtained all necessary rights/permissions for sharing and public display.

Community

The SPOTTERON service enables it, users, like yourself to learn, communicate and to explore our world together in interactive applications. In the apps, you can post comments, share links, join groups, RSVP to events and give hearts as a tool for a quick appreciation. All your community interactions are publicly visible.

Communication and networking

By providing the option to follow other user accounts and built-in communication tools, we support creating topic-related communities within the projects. We provide and develop communication tools for all users and project partners to be able to exchange and interact with each other. For the project’s partners, we provide additional tools to get in contact with you via direct messages with push notifications or email for questions, news, requests or feedback 

You agree to interact with other users on the platform in a responsible way. Again, we strictly do not tolerate any forms of abuse, hate-speech, “fake news”, sexism, racism, explicit nudity, forbidden symbols, extreme political messages, public shaming or discrimination, invasion of privacy, nor any forms of advertising beside for a documentary purpose.

You agree to be fully responsible for the legality and the of your community interactions and that you have obtained all necessary rights/permissions for sharing and public display.

Your submitted community content license

For all your content submissions on the user profile and the areas like in comment sections and the descriptions of contributions, you grant us a transferable, royalty-free, non-exclusive, sub-licensable and worldwide licence to host, modify, use, display, distribute, modify, copy, publicly perform, translate or create derivate works of your content. You can end this licence anytime by deleting your account or removing your content.

Push Messaging

Part of our service is to enable project partner to send project messages with a push notification to all devices where the partner’s application is installed on. You agree to receive these messages and notifications as long as you have not disabled them in the settings of your device’s operating system manually.

Violations

We respect intellectual property rights (“Urheberrecht”), privacy and trademark laws and expect you to do the same. 

We always reserve the right to delete content violating applicable laws or our standard licences for content without sole discretion or prior notice, without any liability to you or other parties. 

We and the partners of the projects you contributed to reserve the full right to delete or modify any contribution or community content if it is violating these terms. The same reserved right applies to all contributions, which are not in the scope of the project's topic or not fullfilling the quality standards. 

We may also disable your user account if you submit content violating our terms or if you violate our community standards by posting hate speech, swear words or content, that we think is not fitting for our audiences.

Additional consent by project partners

At the first start of an app and in your account, you can optionally give additional consent to allow SPOTTERON to provide your personal data for the purpose of receiving information by the partner of the project. You can withdraw this consent anytime in your user profile’s settings.

All partners of the SPOTTERON platform agree to use the personal data of users only for internal purposes and not to give it to third parties without your additional consent.

Report violations

You can always flag or report violations against community standards or intellectual property rights via This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or contact us at SPOTTERON Gmbh, Faßziehergasse 5, 1070 Vienna, AT. If a violation against these terms is reported, we reserve the unrestricted right to delete the content and to close the responsible user account without prior notice.

Storage and encryption:

We always use TLS/SSL encryption for your personal data to protect it. Your information is stored in the Cloud Servers we use for the service (currently: AWS on European Servers) and in rotating encrypted backups on the server cloud.

Data Breaches:

Our breach procedures ensure that we have safeguards and measures in place to identify, assess, investigate and report any personal data breach at the earliest possible time. Our procedures are robust and have been disseminated to all partners and employees, making them aware of the reporting lines and steps to follow.

International Data Transfers & Third-Party Disclosures

Where we store or transfer personal information outside the EU, e.g. on an international server hosting for performance optimization, we have robust procedures and safeguarding measures in place to secure, encrypt and maintain the integrity of the data. 

Information on Security & Technical and Organisational Measures

We take the privacy and security of our users and their personal information very seriously and take every reasonable measure and precaution to protect and secure the personal data that we process. We have robust information security policies and procedures in place to protect personal information from unauthorised access, alteration, disclosure or destruction and have several layers of security measures, including:

  • SSL/TLS encryption of all transfer of personal data both in applications and on websites
  • Encrypted and secure access control to the administration interface for partners
  • Strong password-protected storage of access codes to administration tools and login areas
  • Server & Cloud storage at respected and high-quality providers of such services
  • internal policies to avoid including third party software or scripts (e.g. Analytics, Social Media platform scripts, etc) as much as possible, both in applications running on the SPOTTERON platform and also on web design projects we develop.

By using any of the applications based on the SPOTTERON service you agree not to interfere or misuse our service or using a method other than the tools and interfaces we provide for use.

You may not do any of the following while accessing or using the services:

1) probe, scan, or test the vulnerability of any system or network or breach or circumvent any security or authentication measures;

2) access, tamper with, or use non-public areas of the services, SPOTTERON’s or its partner’s computer systems, or the delivery systems of SPOTTERON’s providers or partners;

3) access, search or attempt to access or search the services by any means (automated or otherwise) other than through our officially published current interfaces that are provided by us (and only in the range of SPOTTERON’s terms and conditions) unless you have been specifically allowed to do so in a separate agreement with us. Crawling the service by robots for search indexing is permitted in accordance with the robots.txt file, however, scraping the services without the prior consent of SPOTTERON and its partners is expressly forbidden);

4) interfere with, do or try to disrupt the access of any user, host or network, including (without limitation) sending malicious software, flooding, mail-bombing or spamming or by scripting the creation of content.

5) forge any TCP/IP packet header or any part of the header information in any email or posting, or in any way use the Services to send altered, deceptive or false source-identifying information;

Ending These Terms

You may end your legal agreement with SPOTTERON at any time by deleting your account in any of the apps running on the platform and discontinuing your use of the services.

We may suspend or terminate your account and this binding contract at any time for any or no reason, including, but not limited to, if we reasonably believe that you have violated these terms of use and community standards or you create risk or possible legal exposure for us.

Your account can be removed due to unlawful conduct or due to prolonged inactivity or if our provision of the services is no longer viable. We will make reasonable efforts to notify you by the email address associated with your account or the next time you attempt to access your account, depending on the circumstances. In all such cases, the Terms shall terminate, including, without limitation, your license to use the service.

DPO, GDPR Roles and Employees

Our team is aware of the GDPR across the organisation, assessing our GDPR readiness, identifying any gap areas and implementing the new policies, procedures and measures. We understand that continuous employee awareness and understanding is vital to the continued compliance of the GDPR and we instruct/inform new employees about the GDPR. We have designated Philipp Hummer as our Data Protection Officer (DPO).

If any part of these terms is found to be unenforceable, the other parts will still remain in full effect.

SPOTTERON Terms of Use | 20th March 2020

Shortnews

  • Tune in for Citizen Science! From  6.-10. September, the European Citizen Science Conference 2020 will be held exclusively online in Trieste, Italy. We are glad to be part of an online session about ‚Technology Design' as well as a poster presentation. See the detailed program in our Blog!

    Tuesday, 01 September 2020
  • Suriname is a small country in South America, an impressive 93 per cent of it is covered in dense forests. With the new app Green Growth Forests - the first app on the SPOTTERON platform in South America - Citizen Scientists can help to keep it that way. Read more on the Blog!

    Wednesday, 19 August 2020