Archived News

Policy update and automated opt-in survey

While working on an automated opt-in survey (about which I write in a bit), it was noticed that our privacy policy and cookie policy is rather out-of-date.

Mostly, we used to store a lot more personal information when you created an account, like email addresses, passwords, etc. As we now use GitHub to handle all that, we can slim down our privacy policy, as we store very little personal information.

For the cookie policy, for years now we only use cookies for the authenticated part of our websites and nothing else.

OpenTTD’s privacy policy has always been: we want to know as little personal information about you as possible. And although these changes were rolled out years ago, the policies did not reflect that yet. They do now!

In short: we removed statements from the policy about information we track, as we haven’t done that for years now.

So, what about this automated opt-in survey you are talking about?

There are many ways to play OpenTTD. There are tons of settings; you can also load extensions, from AIs to NewGRFs. They all modify how the game plays.

From a developer perspective, we don’t actually know which settings are heavily used, and which are never used. As such, we often find ourselves in a discussion about whether something is actually useful. The people we talk most about, are not our average user; as it goes, the most vocal people are not the commoner, but more likely the niche. And although we like to promote as many play-styles as possible, it is easy to focus on those vocal people, instead of the 90%.

From an AI / NewGRF perspective, we don’t actually know how many people play a game with an extension. As such, it is difficult to judge which extension is actually “popular”, and which extension is never really used. This means it is tricky on BaNaNaS to suggest any content.

For both cases we are designing an opt-in automated survey. It is designed to be privacy friendly, and to be as transparent as possible.

More information about this survey can be found here. And once we released our next version (14.0), it will also contain the results of the survey.

If you have any concerns or questions about this, please join the discussion.