CircleMe has GDPR covered!

Needless to say, for us at CircleMe data is important, and among this, your data is of the utmost importance. It’s since the beginning of CircleMe (now more than 7 years) that we care about your personal data and do all is necessary to keep it safe and, of course, private. We do this with passion and commitment.

For this reason, this month, motivated by the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) [(EU) 2016/679] which comes into effect today, we have dedicated some time to improve our services and its related Privacy Policies.

You know, you might have been bombarded by e-mails and other messages regarding the GDPR effect (and that is annoying, no doubt!), but we believe that the GDPR is actually a great step in the right direction, for any digital citizen. For this reason, we welcome and embrace it, with the hope that we will always do what is required (and more!) to comply to all its requirements.

So, how did we start doing this practically? Well, let us tell you what we did.

WE COMMUNICATE TERMS BETTER

No doubt communication is key, and often trying to understand what is written in the fine-prints of terms and policies is a total nightmare. We will try to stay away from incomprehensible legal text, or at least, when we cannot avoid it, we will try to help with some simplifications along the sides.

So, in short these are some key points related to how we deal with your personal data:

  1. We use the data to make CircleMe awesome. Our objective is to provide you with a service (CircleMe) that gets you the best digital experience based on your interest-profile. For this reason, we need to ask you about your interests (and other personal data) to provide you with a service you will love.
  2. Your data is, in fact, yours! You are in control of your data in more than one ways: you can decide how much data you provide us; you can edit your data; you can deactivate your account (if you want to take some time off the platform and hide all your information); you can permanently delete all your data and you can even ask you to export your data (for use in other ways).
  3. We will always ask permission to use your data appropriately. This means that you might have to ‘tick’ several boxes instead of just one, but we do it for transparency and to clarify that there are different uses of this data. Depending on the case, we use your personal data to make CircleMe work well for you; we use it to communicate with you; we use it to create intelligence on people’s interests; we use it to learn how to improve our services.
  4. We do not sell your personal data. We are a business, and might do deals where aggregated forms of data are shared with partners, but we do not sell data that cannot be anonymized. Hope you appreciate our transparency.
  5. Data is gone if not used. We will delete your data if you stop using our services for a prolonged amount of time.
  6. Data safety in our minds. Good security measures are in place since years to protect your data, but we are making them even more robust. Rest also assured that in the unfortunate event of a data breach, we will inform you and the authorities within 48-72 hours.

We certainly do home that you appreciated these bullet points, and that they were comprehensible enough. Obviously below you will find all the details related to these points, by visiting our Privacy Policy.

WE HAVE A REVISED PRIVACY POLICY

Pretty simply, as mentioned above, now you can read our revised Privacy Policy which we have aligned with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

Please note that if you have any question or doubt about it, you can ready out to us at any moment by writing to privacy@circleme.com. Our staff will respond to you in a timely fashion.

WE IMPROVED OUR SERVICE CIRCLEME

Aligned with our company philosophy of “continuous improvement”, in the past weeks our team focused on improving many areas of the site also to ensure better and more transparent communication.

You will find tweaks in our registration process as well as in our communication (by email and internal to the platform) and in additional notification opportunities within the platform.

Perhaps, at times, the notifications might appear a bit overwhelming, but our goal is just to ensure that in this transition period all our users (which are now in the hundreds of thousands) will get all the needed information from us. Once we feel that all our community has been informed, you will see a decrease in the number of these notifications.

TO WRAP UP ON THE PERSONAL DATA DAY…

Frankly, we are very happy that the European Community gave us the chance to dedicate more time to this delicate and important topic of personal data protection. We hope that this step is the first significant one in the direction to give increasing power and clearer awareness to the digital citizen, all across the web.

Now, time to enjoy the immense Internet again!

 

 

3000+ Businesses Flock to CircleMe!

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The last 6 months have seen a promising trend on our interest-platform CircleMe. As of last week, in fact, our systems have detected at least 3000+ business accounts registered on our platform.

From our analysis, these initial 3000+ businesses are mostly small and medium companies which are seeking visibility and that value the importance of being on a platform which focuses on the expression and study of people’s interests (not by guessing them, but by asking them directly to all its users).

Hence, among the many companies, we find ventures such as The School of Makeup, represented by the tutor and blogger Sacha Parker (https://www.circleme.com/sashaparker). This user is taking advantage of the platform also by posting often relevant content on interest-pages about makeup, hairstyle, beauty tips and others, targeting specifically Circlers who are interested in such subjects. Excellent use of the platform, Sasha!

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Another fun example is by the company Candy Fix (www.circleme.com/CandyFix460775735), which seems to provide personalized candy boxes for anniversaries, birthdays, corporate events, and more. Now, that’s a good link to save, for some special occasions during which getting spoiled. 😉

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But we also find London restaurants, such as the Indian one Miran Masala, right opposite the London Olympia (www.circleme.com/miranmasala) or professional photographers studios such as Cliik Studios (https://www.circleme.com/cliikstudios), based in Manchester and very active as well in terms of content-posts (as you can guess, related to Photography, interest for which we have lots of engaged users).

3000+ small and medium businesses are starting to notice and appreciate the value of having a presence on CircleMe, and we honor this trust. For this reason, in these days we are working hard to offer new features to these users, including opportunities for businesses to leverage their presence on our platform. In the meantime, you will start to notice the new icon “BUSINESS” appearing on the user pages of these accounts, to facilitate recognizing such an account as soon as you visit their CircleMe page.

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Businesses can identify themselves as a “company” profile instead of a “private user” profile by accessing their own Settings page (https://www.circleme.com/settings). By selecting the “company” setting, businesses will be receive dedicated communication and special offers. In these days our team is closing up on our special features package which will be provided to any business account. More news on this coming soon!

Concurrently, our team is working hard to ensure that the user-experience for our many Circlers will not be negatively affected by the comprehensible interest of businesses to reach out to our community of users. Furthermore, and as important as the previous point, we want to make sure that the precious data and intelligence we extract from the interest-graph will not be affected by the biased behavior of business accounts, and so we are working on adapting our algorithms and models to take into consideration this new type of user.

We are keeping busy with many evolutions to our platform, and cannot wait to share more news with all of you.

Very exciting times and extremely happy that this CircleMe party is getting crowded! Everybody’s welcome!

#crowdedparty #businessoncircleme #bewhatyoulike

 

Looking for a BACK-END developer: are you our gal / our guy?

Things got pretty busy at Exa Futures (the company behind CircleMe) in the last 6 months, and for this reason we are looking for new people to join our gang. Not sure if our story is as exciting as Pied Piper, but certainly it’s more real.

Jokes apart, we are looking for a BACK-END DEVELOPER to join our team asap. Interested?

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In short, we are looking for a talented developer, with good experience on Ruby/Rails, Java and mySQL (i.e., relational db’s), familiarity with AWS and with GIT. Knowledge of Python a plus. A person happy to work with a small but talented team, ideally in the city of Milan (but we are totally ok in considering also remote-working).

At the following link you can read the official and detailed job description: http://exafutures.com/jointheteam . If the description intrigues you, please reach out through the form or the email contact shown.

Want to join Exa Futures (and CircleMe) to work on the study of society’s life interests? If you are curious, and want to learn more about it, just write to us at careers@circleme.com

Android’s app gets a new look!

Yes, we know, it was long overdue, but finally we got to freshening-up the Android app look&feel and today we launch our sexiest-yet app for Samsung, Huawei, LG, OnePlus, Xiaomi, ZTE, Google Phones, HTC, Motorola, NEC, Acer, Asus, or whatever other Android device you might own! We are sure tens of thousands of people will be happy for it.

Try it out by downloading it from the Google Play store.

This new version not only features the latest CircleMe graphic design, but also gets to you plenty of small improvements and bug fixes that some of you were desperately looking for. Here below you can get a ‘feel’ for the new app with a nice screenshots gallery.

 

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In the meantime, our interest-network continues to increase, with millions of articles, posts, images and videos available for any of your life’s passion you can think of. Each day, you can expect at least 500 and up to 1000 new articles with news about your favorite topics.

Get the new ANDROID app now, and if you like what you see…. spread the word, please! 🙂

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.cascaad.circleme

#bewhatyoulike , always!

New iOS app with lots of users around you!

We get excited about every new release, especially as it allows us to launch features that our Circlers have put on their “wish list” in the past weeks.

Today, the new version of our iOS app will feature some improvements to the user-experience, both for the discovery of other Circlers, and the discovery of new interests and related content.

On the discovery of new users using the app, we apply now better filters in our algorithm to show users who are closer to the Circler, and who have a richer and better-matching interest-profile. Our tests have proven very positive, with results showing a much better set of people suggested for different users and their related profile. Try it now and let us know what you think of it!

On the discovery of new interests, our algorithms are getting much more effective in bringing to a Circler’s attention not only the popular interests, but also the ones “hyped” (i.e., interests that in a given, short, timeframe get lots of visibility and activity around them). This way you will not just see ‘Traveling” (9200+ likes), “Apple” (12800+ likes) and “Game of Thrones” (5250+ likes) on the list, but even interests such as the one about the actress and model Alicia Vikander (165 likes now) or the one about the astronomical phenomenon of the Eclipse (959 likes now).

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The last weeks have been very rewarding to us, with the involvement of our users increasing constantly (+110% time spent per user since the beginning of Summer). We’re very honored of this, and we hope that all our little improvements will continue to make you happy and enjoying the use of CircleMe.

Get the new iOS app now, and if you like what you see…. spread the word, please! 🙂

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/circleme-the-interest-based-social-network/id505991146

#bewhatyoulike , always!

Nope, CircleMe is not really a social network! [Or not ‘just’ that]

 

lupo-circleme-1Wait, let’s make this clear from the beginning: it’s not that we dislike social networks (on the contrary, we love them!), but CircleMe is not properly defined as one, even though often people think of us first and foremost as [yet another] social network on the market. Sure, we have some nice social network features, which are always important in a digital platform today… but we are something else. Frankly, we are more than that!

CircleMe was architectured in such a way to provide significant value to a user even if she/he would choose to be ‘alone’ on the platform. We are certainly aware of the increasingly popular ‘social needs’ of the digital age, and yet we know that keeping some time for yourself is also a very precious thing for our wellbeing.

Let’s face it, from time to time, some moments alone can be pretty enjoyable… like the beautiful ‘pet’ in the image above is proudly showing us. 😉

Sure, CircleMe has some very nifty features related to connecting users on the platform and enabling you to stay in touch with such Circlers, who now are in the hundreds of thousands all around the globe (nope, not millions yet!). The connecting feature we introduced (i.e., the “Trust” button) was done to increase the potential for accessing interesting and relevant content, as you gradually start relying on other people to scout good content for you. This is what is called “social recommendation” or sometimes “social filtering“, and it’s something we like as a concept and certainly continue to invest on.

Furthermore, on CircleMe you can send messages to other Circlers, or even tag people on interesting content you want them to notice (to do that, in a comment area simply start typing with the symbol “@” and then the user’s name you want to tag).

Yet, CircleMe was not born to substitute itself to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Snapchat… real kings and queens of social networks. Those networks know how to keep people in touch with one another, and so we let them do the job while we focus on something else! 😉

We created CircleMe with one objective in mind: to make you enjoy the web more and more, by personalizing your digital content experience based on your unique interest profile (i.e., a personal magazine, a personal calendar, a personal map, and so on…). Hence, either you use CircleMe while connecting and chatting with friends and interesting people, or in total isolation, the purpose remains the same. We want to be your go-to-place for articles, news and any type of content that is relevant for you!

Here below is a little example of what we mean by creating a “personal magazine” for you (or, in this case, for a person who likes LEGO, photography, Science, Surfing, Formula 1, Buddhism and some other particular things ;)).

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A sample of CircleMe’s personal magazine look&feel

Based on this bold statement (i.e., “we are not a social network”), the intriguing consequence is the realization that on CircleMe you can get the benefit of the platform even if you never connect with a single user. Yeah, that’s a bit of a twist, we know.

Now, nothing against you ‘trusting‘ some very interesting Circlers on the platform, but so you know, you’ll get its benefits and value even if you want to keep things for yourself.

Now, having made this point clearer… time to explore this digital world, you lone wolf! 😉

 

CircleMe x Expo Milano 2015

Here at CircleMe we’re proud of being from Milan. Its foggy streets were once walked by some of our favourite artists like Caravaggio and Da Vinci, and it also has one of the most impressive buildings in the world: The Duomo. In 2015, we’re proudest than ever, as EXPO 2015 will bless its streets with culture and thought provoking topics.

Today, we’re super excited to contribute our bit to Milan’s legacy as the world capital of design and fashion as we’re collaborating with one of our favourite projects by EXPO Milano 2015: Women for Expo.

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During the six months of the Women for Expo project, views will be shared on the nourishment of not only the body, but of freedom and intelligence. The sustainability of the planet is expected to form a new alliance between food and cultures and it is women who will be the driving force behind this.

“Women for Expo is a simple and symbolic invitation to share the recipe for life. That is a recipe that has a personal story behind it.”

We think such initiative, which aims to involve women from every country, culture, profession and age is a fabulous one. Thus, we’re overjoyed to be able to collaborate by facilitating participation by women from across the world on CircleMe.

Those interested in the project will be able to follow the latest news and discussions originated from Women for Expo and make their own contribution in continuously evolving conversations. Like Women for Expo on CircleMe today!