Effective Date: July 1, 2023

This is the official privacy policy ("Privacy Policy") of the California Academy of Sciences ("Academy", "we", "us" or "our") and describes how we handle Personal Information (as defined below) you provide to us or that we collect from you through the use of our Website, which is located at www.calacademy.org, and any additional, replacement, substitute or backup websites and web pages that are associated with our website, including store.calacademy.org, www.biographic.com, www.bigpicturecompetition.org, and www.antweb.org (collectively, the "Website"), when you visit our museums, exhibits or other events, make inquiries or contact us through email or phone, subscribe to our mailing lists, make a donation to us, enter a sweepstakes/contest sponsored by us, respond to a survey or otherwise engage with us. 

This Policy is subject to our Terms of Use located at https://www.calacademy.org/terms-of-use. We may update this Policy from time to time, as specified in the “Changes to This Privacy Policy” section below.

Your Consent

Please review this Policy. You should read this entire Policy before submitting information, including personal information, to us in any form or using our Site. Whenever you submit personal information to us, you consent to the collection, use, disclosure, transfer, and storage of that information in accordance with this Policy.

All personal information may be used for the purposes stated in this Policy. We may make full use of all information that is de-identified, aggregated, or otherwise not in personally identifiable form. We may also make full use of all user-generated content you submit to us, in accordance with our Terms of Use.


Personal Information

When we use the term "Personal Information" in this Privacy Policy, we mean information such as your first/middle initial or name, last name, e-mail address, street address, mailing address if different, town or city, state, zip code, telephone number, date of birth, credit card information, and any other information that would allow someone to identify you or contact you including information collected through cookies and other technology. We collect information from you when you voluntarily provide it, using automated technology, and through third party sources. We may combine data from third party sources including through other companies, exchanging mailing lists, database co-operatives, and referrals. We may collect Personal Information about you when you purchase an Academy membership, purchase Academy tickets, make a donation to the Academy, register for an Academy event, participate in an Academy contest or sweepstakes, and for similar business purposes.

Personal Information also includes information collected and maintained through the use of our Website, including about your personal preferences, survey responses and your relationship with us (for example, if you are a subscriber to Academy eNews). When you browse our Website, we collect information about you through your browser, computer hardware and software. This information can include your IP address, device ID, browser type, domain names, access times and dates, number of clicks, pages viewed, one or more cookies (as described below) that may uniquely identify your browser, and referring website addresses. We also collect and maintain aggregate anonymous information about usage of and visitors to our website.


How We Use Your Personal Information

The Academy uses Personal Information that you provide in order to send you Academy eNews, provide you with information regarding the Academy and Academy services and opportunities by means of, but not limited to web, email, mail, text message, to process Academy memberships, advertising and marketing, including direct marketing, to administer and maintain our Website and, if applicable, your subscription to Academy eNews. When you provide us with this Personal Information, you are consenting to receive each issue of our Academy eNews and any related emails. You may subscribe or unsubscribe to Academy communications at any time by clicking the “Manage Subscription” link at the bottom of any email you receive from the Academy. Any credit card information you provide in connection with a transaction will be used only as needed to process that transaction.

If you are a subscriber, you must give us current, complete and accurate information and keep the information you provide to us up to date. We cannot and shall not be responsible for any problems or liability that may arise if you do not give us current, accurate, truthful or complete information or you fail to update the information you give us.

Except as disclosed in this Privacy Policy or authorized by you via opt-in, the Academy does not share, sell, rent or lease any Personal Information that you provide with any unaffiliated third parties unless you authorize us to do so by opting-in. The term "unaffiliated third parties" or "third parties" does not include any subsidiaries or affiliates of the Academy. The exception to this Privacy Policy is that we may share your personal information with other Bay Area cultural organizations through mailing list exchanges, for which you will have the ability to opt out.


Retention of Personal Information

We will retain your personal information (collected through offline and online methods) for as long as it is necessary for the purposes described in this Policy. We will retain and use your personal information to the extent necessary to comply with our legal obligations, resolve disputes, and enforce our legal agreements and policies.


Sharing of Information

Service Providers and Contractors
We disclose Personal Information you provide to consultants, service providers, and contractors that we use to support our business and operations who have agreed to keep the information confidential and use it only to provide the applicable service(s) such as vendors that help us communicate with you, vendors that host our website and data, marketing and targeted advertising vendors, security and fraud detection vendors.

Third Parties
We share your personal information, including name, address, details of your membership, and transactions, including donation amount and history, email communication history, and history of other interactions with us, through mailing list exchanges with third parties such as Arts and Cultural organizations, Co-operative databases, and advertising trade organizations such as Encore: Museum Guide. These companies may use the shared information for their own purposes including advertising and marketing. If you would like to opt-out of this sharing, please contact us at privacy@calacademy.org and request to be put on the Do Not Exchange list.

Legal Obligations
We may disclose Personal Information to outside parties (including, without limitation, governmental agencies) if required to do so by law, regulation or court order; to respond to governmental and/or law enforcement requests; to identify, contact or bring legal action against someone who may be causing injury to or interfering with our (or others’) rights or property; to support any actual or threatened claim, defense or declaration in a case or before any jurisdictional and/or administrative authority, arbitration or mediation panel; or in connection with disciplinary actions/investigations.


Children; Intended Audience of Websites; COPPA Compliance

We do not knowingly collect or solicit personal information from children or knowingly allow children to purchase goods or memberships through our website. Visitors 12 years of age and younger must obtain a parent or guardian’s permission before submitting any personal information to this or any other website. In the event that we learn that we have received any personal information from a visitor 12 years of age or younger, we will delete that information as quickly as possible. Accordingly, we are in compliance with the requirements of the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (“COPPA”). If you believe that we might have information from or about a child 12 years of age or younger, please contact us at legal@calacademy.org.


Unaffiliated Third Parties

Unless authorized by you through your opt-in, or as provided herein, we will make your Personal Information available to non-affiliated third parties only in the following circumstances:

  • If we are compelled to do so by a governmental agency, court or other entity (e.g., to respond to subpoenas, court orders or legal process);
  • If we believe your actions violate a law, regulation, this Privacy Policy or any applicable Website terms of use, or if you threaten the rights, property or safety of us, our Website, any other users or third party;
  • If, in our sole discretion, we believe disclosure is necessary to investigate or resolve possible problems or inquiries, to protect our assets, to defend our interests or comply with our legal and regulatory obligations; or

If there is a bankruptcy, merger, acquisition, transfer of control, joint venture or other business combination involving the Academy.



Cookies are small, removable data files that are stored on your computer's hard drive by your Web browser. A "web beacon" is a small object or image that is embedded into a web page, application, or email and is used to track activity. They are also sometimes referred to as pixels and tags.

When you visit our site, we and/or third parties collect information using one or more cookies, web beacons, pixels, or other automated technology to uniquely identify your browser, which allows us to keep track of your interactions with our Website and thereby enhance and personalize your online experience on the Website. Most web browsers automatically accept cookies, but you can change the preferences of your browser so that it does not accept them.

To find more information about cookies and for instructions on how to disable them, please visit www.allaboutcookies.org or the help section of your browser. By disabling cookies, you won’t be able to enjoy the convenience provided by our customization.


Advertising and Behavioral Marketing

We use remarketing services to advertise on third-party websites to you after you visit our Website, applications, and other online services.

We and/or third-parties including advertising companies, marketing entities , and service providers on our behalf, use cookies, web beacons and other similar technology, to collect information for the purposes described in this Privacy Policy including advertising, analytics, online behavioral marketing, monitoring performance and improvement of our online services (traffic, errors, page load time, popular pages, etc.).

You may opt out of behavioral marketing as follows:

Digital Advertising Alliance: To opt out, visit the Digital Advertising Alliance or National Advertising Initiative websites; or by using your mobile device settings.

Facebook: To understand more about Facebook advertising and manage your preferences, please visit this link at Facebook. Login to Facebook and go to Settings > Ads > Ad Settings (web) or Ad Preferences > Ad Settings (app) for more information.

Google Ads: To opt out of Google Ads, please visit this link at Google.

Twitter: To understand more about Twitter's Personalized Ads and marketing and exercise your privacy options, please visit this link at Twitter. You can learn more about Twitter's privacy practices and policies by visiting their Privacy Policy page at Twitter Privacy.

Pinterest: You can opt-out from Pinterest's interest-based ads by enabling the "Do Not Track" functionality of your web browser or by following Pinterest instructions at Pinterest Settings and updating your "Personalization" preferences.

Microsoft: To learn more about how Microsoft uses your data across its products and manage your privacy preferences, please visit Microsoft Privacy. Information on Microsoft Advertising and opt-out choices is available at Microsoft Resources.

Instagram: To learn more about Instagram Ads and to exercise your choices, please visit Instagram Ads.

This Privacy Policy does not apply to, and we are not responsible for, third-party cookies, web beacons, or other tracking technologies, which are covered by such third parties' privacy policies. For more information, we encourage you to check the privacy policies of these third parties to learn about their privacy practices.


Links and Third Parties

From time to time there may be opportunities through the Website to opt-in to receive information from non-Academy entities. If you opt-in, you may receive correspondence from these organizations on programs, products or services that might interest you. Your communication with these entities should be directly with such entities.

In addition, the Website may provide links to resources we believe may be useful. These links will lead you to websites operated by third parties that operate under different privacy policies. We encourage you to review those privacy policies, as this Privacy Policy does not apply to such sites, and we have no control over information you may submit to those third parties or how they may use the information you provide to them. We may use third parties, such as ad server companies, to present advertisements you may see on our Website, which may also include advertisements placed by third parties. These third parties may employ cookie and web bug technologies to measure advertising effectiveness. We have no control over such third parties’ use of technologies or their policies and practices concerning their collection and use of your information. Our Privacy Policy does not cover information collected by third parties, nor how they may use such information.


How We Protect Your Information

We are committed to protecting the Personal Information you share with us through use of our Website and we maintain reasonable physical, electronic and procedural safeguards to protect your Personal Information. We limit access to the Website by our own employees to individuals who are authorized for the proper handling of such information and any employee found violating our standards of security and confidentiality is subject to our disciplinary processes. We request our service providers to follow the same policy. Unfortunately, we cannot guarantee that data transmitted over the Internet will always be secure. As a result, although we strive to protect your Personal Information, we cannot ensure or warrant the security of any information you transmit or we may learn as a result of your use of our Website and you do so at your own risk. If, for any reason, you do not agree with this Privacy Policy, please do not use or attempt to take advantage of any of the information, services, features or functions of the Website that might require you to provide your Personal Information (e.g., subscribing to Academy eNews).


Your California Privacy Rights

Residents of the State of California, under the California Civil Code, have the right to request from companies conducting business in California, a list of all third parties to which the company has disclosed Personal Information during the preceding year for direct marketing purposes. Except with respect to the limited exceptions described above, we do not share your Personal Information with any third parties for direct marketing purposes.

If you are a California resident and request information about how to exercise your third party disclosure choices, you must send a request to the following address with a preference on how our response to your request should be sent (email or postal mail). Send an email to the Privacy Administrator at

privacy@calacademy.org or contact us via postal mail at:

California Academy of Sciences - Privacy Administrator
55 Music Concourse Drive
Golden Gate Park
San Francisco, CA 94118
Attn: Your California Privacy Rights

All requests sent via postal mail must be labeled "Your California Privacy Rights" on the envelope or postcard and clearly stated on the actual request.

For all requests, please include your name, street address, city, state, and zip code. (Your street address is optional if you wish to receive a response to your request via email. Please include your zip code for our own recordkeeping.) We will not accept requests via the telephone or by facsimile. We are not responsible for notices that are not labeled or sent properly, notices that are illegible or do not have complete information.


California Do Not Track Notice

Because there are not yet common, industry-accepted "do not track" standards and systems, the Site does not currently respond to Do Not Track signals. In addition, we may allow third parties to collect Personal Information from your activity on our website, as described in this Privacy Policy.


Revisions to This Privacy Policy

We may revise this Privacy Policy at any time and from time to time without advance notice, by posting an updated and revised version of this Privacy Policy on the Website. The revisions are effective immediately upon posting and we encourage you to check this Privacy Policy often so you are aware of the most current terms and conditions that apply to you.


All Users

If any user of our Website or any subscriber has any questions about this Privacy Policy, please contact our Privacy Administrator at

privacy@calacademy.org, or:
California Academy of Sciences - Privacy Administrator
55 Music Concourse Drive
Golden Gate Park
San Francisco, CA 94118

This Privacy Policy was last modified on January 3, 2023

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