Privacy concerns for global Gen-Z audiences

Hi, planning to use Discourse to create a global community for young audiences. Account settings will be set up (disabled chat, no anon posting, etc) but in terms of their data and information, is it safe?

Yes. Discourse is fully open source so you could see if something was collecting data and stuff. And you can self host it meaning only you can see everything.

You can view Discourse’s privicy policy here Privacy policy | Discourse - Civilized Discussion


Thanks for the reply! Sorry not so tech-savvy! I’m currently subscribed to the Business offer free trial and moving to Managed/Enterprise in the future. If it’s Discourse-managed, do they take ownership of data? What offering will it be if it’s “self-hosted”? Does “self-hosted” mean you take the codes and set it up on your own?

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Since you host with discourse they do collect data as its needed to host on your behalf (like contents of posts, usernames etc). Never read the privcy policy in dept so I dont know if you or DIscourse owns the data. I can say you can always get a copy of the data. In the privicy policy they do say:

How can I contact CDCK about privacy?

You can send questions, requests, and complaints to:

Civilized Discourse Construction Kit, Inc

European Users with questions or complaints about GDPR compliance should also address CDCK’s representative in the Union via email at or via mail to

M. RĂ©gis Hanol
Civilized Discourse Construction Kit, Inc
78 Allée Primavera
Centre UBIDOCA, 15232
74370 ANNECY

For complaints under GDPR, European Union users may lodge complaints with their local data protection supervisory authorities.

Thats correct.

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We never take ownership of any of our customer data, we are merely custodians of data. Ownership remains yours, at any point any of our customers can take data and move to self hosting or a different platform.


I’m not sure how young you mean exactly, but there are some important legal considerations if you have users under the age of 13. This probably goes beyond site settings.

The default privacy policy simply excludes children that young. I used to work at College Confidential, a Discourse community for students interested in applying for college. Our compliance team drew the line at 13 as well because it wasn’t worth the liability for pre-teen students.


This must be another speed bump by language barrier, but the original question quite often means ”is CDCK using customers’ data for own purposes as marketing”. Sure, you don’t, I don’t claim anything else at all. But it is big time different thing than ownership vs. to act as a custodian.

And again — I understand meanings quite differently than anglos every now and then, and there is chance it was really about ownership in the meaning ”can we take our database and files when we want and walk away”.

And then answer is what Sam said. Yes, every hosted customer can take and use database and files, and use theirs customers’, aka. users, data as they would be owners :smirk:

I have no idea what kind partner CDCK is at B2B world. Quite reliable I reckon because I’ve never heard anything negative. But Discourse itself works as it should in this meaning, world wide AFAIK covering differences between northern america, UK, EU (including stranger things of Germany), China etc.

And same applies to those few competitors too, businesswise. Discourse itself is always same, of course.

If you want the specifics, there is a page with all the details spelled out very very precicely… :slight_smile:

And as far as data management of customers’ data, they all sign something similar to this: