- Changes to These Terms and Conditions
- Membership Privileges
- Subscription Refund Policy
- Fraud Management Policies
- Security Statement
- Chat/Forum/Messaging Policy
- Pro Purchase Program
These terms and conditions may change from time to time. Your use of this website, and the privileges associated with the purchase of your membership, constitute the automatic acceptance of these terms and conditions.
We didn’t really want to waste a whole page on this but our attorney said we sort of had to. If it was up to us, we’d keep it brutally simple:
Your mama ain’t watching out for you. Don’t do anything stupid.
But despite the fact that this one line should be sufficient, the legal guys tell us that it wouldn’t be enforceable in a court of law. So here’s the rest.
This Web site is a compilation of information, perspectives, and opinions and is provided to the reader with no warranty whatsoever.
The content herein does not, in any part, comprise a safety manual. In contrast, it provides information about taking more risks when you enter the backcountry. Consequently, it is not intended for beginning backpackers or those that otherwise do not already know how to stay dry and warm in inclement weather, possess wilderness survival skills, and know how to recognize and avoid dangerous situations.
Therefore, be warned that you must exercise your own judgment in evaluating the accuracy, applicability, and utility of the information provided herein.
THERE ARE NO WARRANTIES, WHETHER EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, THAT INFORMATION PROVIDED AT THIS WEB SITE IS ACCURATE OR RELIABLE. THERE ARE NO WARRANTIES OF FITNESS OR TIMELINESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE OR THAT THIS WEB SITE IS MERCHANTABLE. YOUR USE OF THIS WEB SITE INDICATES YOUR ASSUMPTION OF THE RISK THAT IT MAY CONTAIN ERRORS AND IS AN ACKNOWLEDGMENT OF YOUR OWN SOLE RESPONSIBILITY FOR YOUR HIKING, BACKPACKING, AND MOUNTAINEERING SAFETY.
The primary purpose of paid memberships at this website are to provide you with access to content that is restricted from public viewing. There may or may not be additional benefits or privileges to membership, and the granting or withdrawal of such benefits and privileges are solely at the discretion of the website management.
Therefore, your use of a free, or purchased membership at this website may come with benefits and privileges that are shown on the Subscriptions page.
Forum Privileges and Membership: Abuse of forum guidelines may result in the termination of a Member’s forum posting privileges, and in some cases, termination of all membership privileges.
These benefits and privileges may change from time to time, and they may change during the course of your membership term. If these changes occur during the course of your membership term, and you are unsatisfied with the changes (including termination of your forum membership and/or other member privileges), you are entitled to a full refund of your membership fee by contacting support.
Web Scraping and Automated Scripted Browsing. While we acknowledge the legality of web scraping as a technological right for publicly available data, these terms and conditions prohibit web scraping, automated scripted browsing (where an automated script performs actions that include link clicking, button clicking, form filling, and other user browsing behaviors beyond “reading”) is prohibited by logged-in users including members because these technologies (a) negatively impact server performance and (b) can be used to maliciously alter user-generated data on the site. Detection of behavior is grounds for immediate termination of your membership account without due process.
Electronic subscription licenses are treated like software licenses. As such, we do not offer returns for electronic subscriptions because of the high incidence of piracy and copyright abuse. Thus, in order for you to see a fair preview of what we have to offer, we display excerpts / abstracts of all members-only articles (those designated by “M” or a key icon). Consequently, please be sure to review site content to make sure that you feel that site membership is worth the subscription fee.
Access to BackpackingLight.com is available using any current, free, browser software, on Windows, Linux, and Mac platforms. Inability to access BackpackingLight.com because of failure to upgrade current browser software to what is freely available does not constitute grounds for a subscription refund.
BackpackingLight.com uses fraud detection software that automatically flags suspect transactions. Every transaction is assigned a fraud potential score based on the following criteria:
- An AVS match of the cardholder’s billing address and zip code;
- A CSC/CVC match against the credit card;
- A transaction history of the user that flags multiple declined credit card transaction attempts with incorrect credit card numbers;
- High quantity line item orders;
- High total dollar orders;
- Order history and frequency;
- Mismatched billing and shipping addresses;
- International orders;
- Open or closed proxy server access to our Website;
- Client IP location resolution vs. the cardholder billing city and zip;
- Known countries with a high incidence of fraud (e.g., Indonesia, Nigeria, Eastern Europe), as well as known postal codes within all countries from which a high incidence of fraud is known to originate (based on U.S. fraud tracking databases).
If one of the above criteria do not match (especially the AVS/CSC/CVC), and/or the fraud score indicates a high potential for fraud, we may contact you by telephone (this is why a valid telephone number is required for all orders) for the purpose of:
- Confirm your cardholder billing information and CSC/CVC codes, or to ask you other questions about your order;
- Ask for the name and telephone number of the issuing bank of your credit card so we can call them and confirm the authenticity of the transaction.
What do we do when we suspect a fraudulent transaction?
If we fail to contact you because you left an invalid phone number, or we were unable to confirm transaction authenticity with the issuing bank, your order will not be dispatched and your order will be canceled.
If we receive a “Notice of Fraudulent Transaction” or a “Chargeback Request” (related to a suspected fraudulent transaction) from our transaction processor, we work with the transaction processor to ensure that the true cardholder is reimbursed within 24 hours by reversing their transaction. Second, we automatically file a “Report of Suspected Credit Card Fraud” with the local law enforcement intelligence jurisdictions (including local and state authorities) for the following localities: cardholder billing address (if known), shipping address of order, and claimed billing address of order. In addition, we file these reports with our transaction processor (Merchant Service Bank) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Internet Fraud Division. For transactions originating from both open and closed proxies with international Client IP Addresses, or international shipping addresses, we submit the reports to the appropriate government law enforcement authorities.
We block user accounts and IP addresses (whether open or closed proxy) in cases where confirmed fraudulent transactions are originating from those accounts or IP addresses or IP address ranges. These are not subject to appeal. If you have an Internet Service Provider that is known for hosting fraudulent transactions at BackpackingLight.com, then we’ll block it from accessing the BackpackingLight.com Website. In this case, the customer’s only solution is to change Internet Service Providers.
Information that you enter online through BackpackingLight.com’s order gateway will be transferred via the Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) protocol to an encrypted server to ensure that your personal information is safe. Click here to validate our security certificate.
By participating in a chat room, forums, or private user messaging (hereafter referred to as “chat/forum/messaging”) hosted at this domain, you automatically agree to all of the rules governing your use as provided below. We may revise these terms from time to time. If you continue to participate in chat/forum/messaging after we post changes to these terms and conditions, it will mean that you accept those changes.
Backpacking Light reserves the right to remove for any reason posted materials from chat/forum/messaging, and the right to deny in its sole discretion any user access to chat/forum/messaging, without notice. This includes the following: not identifying yourself with your real name in your forum profile or posting with two or more forum identities. you are a real person, as are the people with whom you are communicating. Please confer the simple respect and trust that comes with communications that is not veiled behind anonymity.
While “censorship” sounds like a dirty word, you need to understand that by participating in our forums, you are agreeing to allow us to exercise our discretion in deciding whether to allow your messages to remain publicly viewable. It is important to us that we maintain a certain level of decency and courteousness, and if we do not view your message as decent, courteous, or otherwise appropriate, it will be removed from public view. If improper behavior becomes a pattern, Backpacking Light reserves the right to block message posting and/or reading privileges, and flagging/labeling the user account with information for the public to view so that other Website users can evaluate the tendencies of this user to post inappropriate information. We thank you in advance for your understanding and your cooperation in maintaining the integrity of our website.
You agree not to submit, upload or post to chat/forum/messaging any content which:
- libels, defames, invades privacy, or is obscene, profane, pornographic, abusive, or threatening;
- infringes any intellectual property or other right of any person or entity, including but not limited to, violating anyone’s copyrights or trademarks;
- falsifies or deletes author attributions, legal notices or other proprietary designations;
- violates any law;
- advocates illegal activity;
- knowingly contains viruses, corrupted files, or other materials that may cause damage to another’s computer; or
- advertises or otherwise solicits funds or sales of goods or services.
Please see the following link for additional guidelines regarding forum behavior:
The information and opinions expressed in materials posted by chat/message board participants are not necessarily those of Backpacking Light, and we make no representations or warranties regarding such posted materials. Participants should be aware that our chat/message boards are public, not private communications. When you voluntarily disclose personal information on chat/forum/messaging, that information can be collected and used by others and may result in unsolicited messages from other people.
By posting any content on chat/forum/messaging, you automatically agree to indemnify Backpacking Light, all other chat/message board participants, and any other person or entity affiliated with the chat/message board, from and against any and all third party claims, demands, liabilities, costs or expenses, including reasonable attorneys’ fees, resulting from your breach of these posting restrictions. By posting on chat/forum/messaging any content authored or owned by you, you automatically (a) grant to all other chat/message board participants, and any other person or entity affiliated with the chat/message board, a perpetual, royalty-free, irrevocable and unrestricted worldwide right and license to use, reproduce, and distribute the posted content for the limited purposes of discussion and commentary, (b) grant to Backpacking Light a perpetual, royalty-free, irrevocable and unrestricted worldwide right and license to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, create derivative works from and distribute the posted content or incorporate the posted content into any form, medium, or technology now known or later developed, and (c) waive all “moral rights” with respect to the posted content.
Backpacking Light complies with the provisions of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998, 17 U.S.C. Sec. 512. Pursuant to that Act, Backpacking Light will promptly remove posted materials in the event a copyright owner provides proper notification to us alleging that the posted materials constitute infringement. If your postings are removed under this procedure, we will notify you and provide the opportunity for a response as provided under the Act.
Any time you post a comment or a Review at Backpacking Light in the forums, about a product or service for which you have a vested material interest or a commercial involvement, you must disclose the nature of that relationship in that posting, in accordance with FTC Part 255: “Guides concerning the use of endorsements and testimonials in advertising”.
Your personal information is not released to third parties without your express consent.
Our Commitment to Privacy
What Information Do We Collect?
When you visit our site you may provide us with two types of information: personal information you actively choose to disclose (“Active Information”), and use information collected, in a way not visible to you, on an aggregate anonymous basis as you and others browse our site (“Passive Information”).
No Use of Our Site by Persons Under 13
While we recognize that persons under 13 years of age may browse this Website, no person under 13 should disclose information on this site in chat rooms, forums, or other unrestricted areas where “client” communications is available. You may learn more about protecting children’s privacy online by visiting http://www.ftc.gov/kidzprivacy/.
Active Information You Choose to Provide
You are free to browse the site without disclosing personal information to us. In order to gain use of some sections of the site and gain access to premium content (i.e., become a “user”), or a contributing (posting) forum member, we may ask you to disclose the following information: first and last name, company name, job title, mailing address, email address, daytime telephone number, and keywords that best describe your profession. Contributing (posting) in our forums requires that you maintain an active, valid email address and real first and last names in your user profile. If you elect not to do so, your login and/or posting privileges may be suspended.
If you choose to participate in our community forums, your first and last names will be associated with your post. We discourage anonymity and encourage integrity in your communications so that your identity fairly reflects your reputation for appropriate communications.
If you choose to post information on our site or maintain email, snail mail or telephone contact with us, we may retain such information also.
Passive Information Collected
Our site utilizes a standard technology called “cookies” to collect information about how our site is used. Passive Information gathered may include the date and time of visits, the site pages viewed, time spent at our site, the sites visited just before and just after our site. Passive Information is collected on an aggregate basis without any association to your personal information so that you remain anonymous. This site uses only “temporary” cookies that are removed from your computer immediately after you leave the site. We do not use “user cookies” stored on your hard disk and used to track your site use activity on subsequent visits intended to be anonymous. If you do not wish to transmit “cookie” information about yourself, you may turn off the cookie function in your web browser; please consult the “Help” section of your browser to correctly do so.
Some of the passive information that we collect includes domain names, IP addresses, page visit statistics, and session variables.
What is a Cookie?
Cookies are a feature of web browser software (Internet Explorer, Netscape Navigator, etc.) that allows web servers to recognize the computer used to access a site. They are small pieces of data that are stored by a user’s web browser on one site and can simplify subsequent interactions with that site by the same user or to use the information to streamline the user’s transaction on related web pages. This makes it easier for a user to move from site to site and to complete transactions over the Internet. Cookies should make your online experience easier and more personalized.
How Do We Use the Information Collected?
Broadly speaking, persons we employ directly, or as contractors or agents at our direction, use Active Information for purposes of administering our business activities, providing customer services such as support, and making available other products or services we think may be of interest to our users. We may use the Active Information or Passive Information you provide to us to contact you about changes to our site, new services, features or products we offer, or other information we think you shall find valuable. If at any time you do not wish to receive such information, please send us an email and we will promptly remove you from the appropriate distribution lists.
We use Passive Information to gather information about our users and to enhance and design our site to make it easier, faster and friendlier to use. Additionally, cookies help us know information about how many people visit our site, when they visit and how they use our service. We do not connect any of this information to your personal information or email address.* However, Passive Information may result in your viewing of particular content based on your user habits for your viewing on our site.
* The exception to this occurs when we are attempting to correlate user accounts with IP addresses when users are violating this Terms and Conditions of Use Agreement, or on an as-needed basis for troubleshooting technical problems of Website usage.
Your Information In Relation to Others We Link To
You may be able to access other websites through our site. When you do so you are doing so subject to their policies regarding privacy and data collection and you should read those sites’ privacy policies to make sure you agree to them before using such sites. When you choose to shop at such sites, you should read their privacy policies to make sure you agree to them before making purchases.
Sharing Information with Advertisers or Other Third Parties
We may disclose anonymous information about user habits, characteristics and user patterns, based on aggregate user statistics to third parties, including manufacturers submitting product reviews, sponsors for our donation and grant programs, or the press. We do NOT sell or otherwise share your personal information with direct marketing companies or brokers.
Sharing Information with the Government or As Otherwise Required by Law
We may be required by law or government agency to disclose both Active and Passive Information you have provided to us.
How Do We Secure Active Information and Passive Information?
We secure your personal information submitted by you by using reasonable efforts to prevent unauthorized access or disclosure, or accidental loss or destruction of Active Information and Passive Information. Your postings on this site and other communications you may have with us via email or snail mail may not be secure unless we advise you that security measures are in place prior to your sending information. Therefore, if you choose to communicate with us through these means, you are assuming the risk of doing so and we request that you do not send or post sensitive information through these means.
How You Can Choose Not to Receive Information About Products or Services By Us, or to Correct, Delete or Access Your Information
If you desire not to receive information about products or services we think may be of interest to you or if you wish to access, delete or correct your information, you can opt out and otherwise manage your account using the appropriate links in emails that we send to you.
We reserve the right to revise this policy at our discretion. Please check back on this site as this policy may be revised from time to time without notice to you.
Backpacking Light receives income from advertising and affiliate relationships. In the case of advertiser-purchased “sponsored content”, Backpacking Light will clearly disclose the nature of the sponsorship whenever that content is published at backpackinglight.com, in our email blasts, or on our social media channels.
In addition, some links to merchants published by Backpacking Light are “affiliate links”. If you click on one of these links and subsequently make a purchase at that merchant’s website, we may receive a small commission on your order.
Backpacking Light reserves the right to edit forum posts for the purpose of improving search engine optimization of keywords of interest to the community. Examples of this type of editing include adding a brand name before a product name, correcting a misspelled industry term (e.g., trap > tarp), or automatically linking certain keywords in user posting to products at retailer websites (affiliate links).