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The TL;DR Summary:

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JUMP AHEAD TO:

Background / Your data rights / My next steps

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What’s up HERO!

It’s been a little while since I put something out on the blog.

The goal this year was to be more¬†consistent¬†with video content for you guys. Whilst I’ve been fortunate enough to work on a few cool project like the Whole Life Challenge and No Meat Athlete Mobility Guide, getting up one vid a week here on the site & YouTube Channel hasn’t quite panned out as I hoped…

Alas – life happens. Despite my loose aim of living as slow and low-key as possible since we move down to Cornwall, things have been busy as heck!

Before I head back to the motherland for what feels like a much needed break to visit my family, I thought I’d take the chance to check in on here, share some thoughts, let you know what’s¬†been going on, and also give you a heads up with regards to the future of HERO Movement…

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First up, let’s talk data¬†

If you’re a human with an email account (I’m guessing that’s likely you) you’ve probably heard of the new EU, GDRP regulations coming into play late May.

Next week actually.

Fantastic…

If you’re like me, your inbox has no doubt been flooded by brands desperately asking you to resubscribe to their newsletter if you want to keep updated with their marketing.

That’s not what I’m gonna do (at least right now).

Here’s the thing:

I’m all for transparency. It’s something I strive to keep at the forefront of everything I do here at HERO Movement.

Overall, I think these new data regulations are a step in the right direction – particularly when it comes to massive companies that store a truckload of your sensitive info, and shady individuals who want to sell your stuff on to advertisers…

That being said, something like this can be somewhat challenging for super-small content creators (and somewhat technical-jargon illiterate individuals) like myself.

The truth is that although HERO Movement has grown a little since I first started the site four or five years ago, I’m still, for the most part, a one-man-band.

My partner truly is a super star, and she helps out with social media posting, taking photos of my crappy handstands, and picking me up when I’ve had enough…

But other than that, it’s all me.

I’m a coach and writer by trade, so I’ll freely admit I’m not quite as clued up on the technical sides of blogging or running a site as I perhaps should be.

But whilst I do have a few options for you to buy a few products and get coaching with me (cheeky, almost ironic plug there Luke), keep in mind that this is more of a passion project than a business for me right now (to say the least) and 99% of the stuff I share with you guys is and always will be free.

Hand on heart – exploring and sharing content that I’m interested in and is hopefully somewhat useful to you guys has¬†always¬†been more of a priority with this site than making dollas. Part of the reason that I’ve not had the chance to really dig my teeth into this whole GDRP thing until now is because I’ve been preoccupied with my main work stuff – freelance writing & design.

And while growing HERO Movement has been a big side-goal of mine over the past few years, it hasn’t been so at the expense of my integrity. I have always tried to be mindful of how I communicate with you guys and to make things as clearcut as possible when it comes to data handling – particularly where my email list is concerned.

Now we’ve established that foundation with that little ramble, let’s talk a bit more about this whole GDPR thing…

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Your data rights (and what I plan on doing to meet them)

This GDRP thing is a pretty big deal. It impacts not just EU businesses, but any organisation or person that processes data of EU citizens (which I guess is most of them).

From what I can see, right now the vast majority of medium to small creators and brands are using the old ‘sit and wait strategy’ – kicking back until the regulations come into play, then seeing how things pan out.

As I said, I’m all for transparency, and on top of that I’ve always been scared of any slightest possibility that I could get into even the smallest amount of trouble – so I’m gonna do my best to get on board with this as best I can, asap.

So here goes…

From what I can gather, the new data regulations are all about how people or companies store your personal information, and how it’s then used.

It seems like it’s largely coming into play to give you, the consumer/individual, more access and control over what your data is and isn’t used for – which as I said above, I feel is a great thing.

The issue is, as a small creator, technical jargon and blurry phrases can make the new rules a little difficult to navigate. As someone who owns a website, has an email list and a free members area – there doesn’t seem to be specific, clear cut steps that I should take. I may be wrong here, but that’s how it appears on the surface right now.

To be completely honest, I’m a little uncertain as to how I’m going to tackle this in the best possible way for you guys. But I thought I’d start by outlining all the potential mediums I can think of that you may have shared data with me here at HERO Movement, what data that includes, how it’s processed, and what I’m doing to keep it as secure as possible. I suppose we’ll move forwards from there!

As far as I can see, some of the most important points of the GDRP legislation have to do with the rights of individuals in terms of their personal data, broken down as follows:

[toggle title=”The right to be informed”]

You have the right to know what data is collected, and where it is stored.

I’ll be double-checking and updating our terms to include this information sometime over the next week, but right now the main things I can think of are:

1. MailChimp Email List

For the past 4 years I’ve used MailChimp as my email marketing provider – it’s a trusted platform used by millions, and has it’s own terms and privacy policies related to the new GDRP regulations.

The data stored when you opt-in includes:

Based on other sections you make, data may also include:

2. WordPress

The engine that powers HERO Movement, and the most widely used website platform in the world.

I’m told that there are currently some native wordpress updates in the works

3. Ultimate Member Plugin

This is currently the platform I use to deliver the free HERO Academy to you guys, although I’m not entirely sure how long that’s gonna continue unfortunately…

When you create your account, I believe it stores:

Other options such as uploading a profile photo and header image were available at one point, but have since been disabled.

4. Siteground

The last thing I can think of right now in terms of data storage is my hosting provider – Siteground. This is where heromovement.net is hosted.

The only ways I see data being stored:

Their terms.

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[toggle title=”The right of access“]

This essentially means you can request to see any data that a company or individual holds about you for free – something I completely agree with.

By this can be done using the contact form or emailing me at luke[at]heromovement.net

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[toggle title=”The right to rectification“]

Essentially, you have the right to edit any data that I may hold on you (such as updating your email address).

Again – no problemo.

This can be requested using the contact form or emailing me at luke[at]heromovement.net

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[toggle title=”The right to erasure“]

You can request the deletion of your data if you feel there is no longer a legitimate reason for me to continue processing it.

I want to make this super clear:

If you’ve ever signed up to get freebies from me (like accessing my newsletter updates or getting my free guides in the HERO Academy), I’ve always tried my best to make sure that I outline (either on the landing page or definitely in the welcome email):

  1. What you can expect from me in terms of email communications (frequency/type of content etc).
  2. How you can unsubscribe from the list at any point using a link in those emails

This has and always will be the case.

Just to be clear, if you ever want to opt out and delete your data, you can:

  • Unsubscibe from my mailing lists using by clicking the unsubscribe link in any email from me
  • Delete your account data from your profile settings in The HERO Academy if you’re registered.
  • Email me at luke[at]heromovement.net

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[toggle title=”The right to restrict processing“]

I believe this has to do with your right to restrict certain aspects of your data that I may hold. Again – this is no problem at all.

This can be done using the contact form or emailing me at luke[at]heromovement.net

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[toggle title=”The right to data portability“]

Basically, if you want to export your data to another provider, you can request that.

As always, this can be done using the contact form or emailing me at luke[at]heromovement.net

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[toggle title=”The right to object“]

Unless I have some compelling legitimate reasons to process your data, you retain the right to object to processing.

I’m not entirely sure what that means to be honest, but just to be clear, if you ever want to opt out, you can:

  • Unsubscribe from my mailing lists using by clicking the unsubscribe link in any email from me
  • Delete your account data from your profile settings in The HERO Academy if you’re registered.
  • Email me at luke[at]heromovement.net

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[toggle title=”Rights in relation to automated decision making and profiling“]

The main thing I can think of relating to this right now is that when you sign up to my newsletter, you can select which subjects interest you most.

  • Mindfulness
  • Nutrition
  • Movement
  • Habits Adventure

From those selections (if you make any), you’re then added to a MailChimp group. This basically makes it easier for me to sort through my list and provide you content that’s geared more specifically towards your interests.

I.e – if you are part of the “Movement” group, I’m more likely gonna share a post on improving mobility with you.

The other point related to the above – MailChimp tracks open rates of emails I send out and clickthroughs – which I suppose could be interpreted as data profiling.

Again, you can unsubscribe from my mailing lists using by clicking the unsubscribe link in any email from me, or drop me an email at luke[at]heromovement.net to update your preferences.
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[toggle title=”How I maximise security of your data“]

  • Using the https:// protocol to serve heromovement.net to you securely
  • Using the Wordfence security plugin to minimise the risk of attacks
  • Using two-factor authentication for MailChimp login
  • No storage of your data on a portable device like a smartphone

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Wowee, what a minefield…

As you can probably tell, this kinda stuff isn’t really my idea of fun…

I love to learn about and practice movement, wellness & adventure, and then share those things with you guys. That’s what this journey is mainly about for me.

But it’s also about overcoming adversity and becoming a more resilient human being.

The benefits of having some form of a platform to do that has to come with some potential obstacles and unknowns, and this seems to be one of them for me right now. So its a responsibility I’m trying my best to shoulder. To be proactive, and see this challenge as an opportunity to grow!

I hope that what I shared here makes some semblance of sense to you. To be completely honest, I’m not entirely sure what this is gonna mean moving forwards, and I think many creators are in a similar boat.

A few things I have in mind for the next week or so:

  • I’ll be updating the terms & conditions¬†and privacy policy of the site to ensure they’re compliant, and if you’re on my email list, I’ll likely drop you a message about that.
  • I’ll be doing my reading and using a GDRP plugin to ensure the whole website is as compliant as possible moving forwards
  • I’ll be doing the same with my MailChimp list and any optin forms you guys come into contact with
  • I’ll be looking at The HERO Academy, and weighing up the pros and cons of having a free membership service. It may be the case that the login feature goes completely.
  • I’ll actually get back onto creating some stuff for you guys. I’ve a brand new video in the works for next week – I’m not sure if I’ll be emailing it out, so be sure to Subscribe to my YouTube Channel if you want to check it out!

Lots of uncertainty, but I can only promise to do my best!

All I know for certain right now is that I’m gonna take a few days off to disconnect completely, enjoy some time with my family, and we’ll see what next week brings.

If you have any thoughts or questions surrounding this whole GDRP debacle, feel free to share them in the comments below, or get in touch via email!

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