Privacy Policy

Material Holdings, LLC, together with its subsidiaries Lieberman Research Worldwide, LRWTonic, LRWGreenberg, Tonic Insight, LRWMotiveQuest, Kelton Global, Killer Visual Strategies, Karma Agency, Salt Branding, and T3 (collectively, “Material,” formerly known as LRW Group), is committed to protecting the privacy of all information we collect from our clients, research participants and visitors to the corporate and survey websites relating to the above businesses (the “Websites”). This policy applies to all client and personal data that we collect or use in the course of conducting these businesses, and covers all client information and research participant data housed at any Material facility or stored on the Material network. This policy does not apply to information which we might collect from our employees, job applicants, or independent contractors.

By accessing or browsing our Websites, participating in any of our surveys, contacting us on social media, or otherwise providing your data to us, you confirm that you have read and understood the entirety of this privacy policy.

Information We Collect From or About You

We are a marketing services company.  As to several of our businesses—those engaged in marketing, digital, and branding consulting, strategy, development, design, and communications—we do not collect or process information as part of our core operations.  As to our other businesses—those engaged in market research and analytics activities—we do collect and process information.  We may also collect information in connection with certain ancillary activities, such visits to our Websites or signups for our newsletters or whitepapers.     

In operating our market research and analytics businesses, most of the information we collect about you (only a small subset of which may be “personal data” or “personally identifiable information” as defined under applicable law) is information you voluntarily disclose to us in connection with our research studies.  Consistent with industry practice, online survey activity is typically conducted on an anonymized or “pseudonymized” basis through the use of randomly assigned identifier codes, so the identity of research participants is not known to us or to the client commissioning the study.  Some of our studies take the form of “research communities,” which involve repeated interaction with participants over a defined period of time; in those cases, we would typically have personal data about you (including a means to contact you), but other participants in the study would not have access to this information.  Data collected as part of our studies may include respondent demographic data and respondent-supplied opinions on products or brands.  As to some studies, we may also collect photo, video or audio responses.  Research participation is voluntary and participants always have the opportunity to decline involvement or to “opt out” of the research after agreeing to participate, as clearly identified in each survey. If the survey involves an incentive or a contest, we may ask for your name and telephone number or email address to notify you if you are a winner. There is never an obligation to provide this information to participate in the survey but if you don’t provide it, you may not be able to participate in the incentive program.  Our legal basis for collection and processing of respondent-supplied personal data is consent; we do not collect personal data without the affirmative consent of the research participant.  Consent can be withdrawn at any time.

As to certain studies, we may obtain information about you (which in some cases may be “personal data” or “personally identifiable information” as defined under applicable law) from our clients, third party vendors, or partners for use in connection with the studies.  As to some studies, this might be your contact information, so we can send you an invitation to participate in the study.  As to other studies, we may purchase existing data, such as demographic, interest, or behavioral information, about you from third party vendors and correlate and append that data to your survey responses so we can perform more robust analysis in connection with the study.  In these studies, you remain anonymous to us (i.e., the dataset is “pseudonymized”); the correlation is typically done through the use of third party intermediaries who are able to associate your responses to other existing data through technology, such as pixel tags or cookies, or other identifying information which they (but not we) possess.  In instances where we use cookies, pixels, or similar technology solution, we will provide you with separate notice prior to deploying the cookie or pixel and afford you with the opportunity to exit the study prior to such deployment.  In those cases, our legal basis for the collecting and processing of the information is our legitimate interest to perform our obligations under our contract with the client commissioning the research study in question.   

As to certain other studies, we may collect public postings and comments you may have made in connection with product reviews or on social media pages of different companies or brands which may, from time to time, include the “handle” or “username” you used for that posting, and which we obfuscate at time of collection.  In those cases, our legal basis for the collecting and processing of the information is our legitimate interest to perform our obligations under our contract with the client commissioning the research study in question. `

Additionally, in connection with some of our online survey activities, we employ software to identify certain systems-related information about respondents entering our surveys, including IP address, device and browser type, and geographic location, and certain behavior information within our surveys by those respondents, such as mouse movements and keyboard events, in order to detect fraudulent activity (e.g., bots), to protect the integrity of the research, and to optimize the survey experience.  This information is only used for these purposes, and may also be shared with third party vendors in connection with the mechanics of the fraud detection process.  Our legal basis for the collection and processing of this information is our legitimate interest to protect the integrity of our business and enhance the services we perform for our clients.

If you are a client or work for a client, we likely have collected various contact, business, and in some cases financial information about you in the course of administering our relationship with you or your employer.  In those cases, our legal basis for the collection and processing of the information is our legitimate interest to perform our obligations under our contract with you or the company for which you work.

If you choose to use social media (for example, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, or our blog) in order to contact us or find out about our services, we may collect your public-facing profile data, data relating to your interactions with us, and any data you post on message boards which are relevant to our business.

We may collect certain information regarding visitors to our Websites, including IP address, device and browser type, date and time of visit, name of the visitor’s Internet service provider, state or country from which the Websites were accessed, web pages from which the visitors linked to the Websites, and behavior while on the Websites (e.g., which links were clicked on).  We may do so using cookies, which are small files placed on your internet browser when you visit our Websites, in order to offer you a more tailored experience in the future by, for example, understanding and remembering your particular browsing preferences.  Occasionally, cookies, pixels, or web beacons may be placed on our Websites by service providers or partners; we do not permit personal data to be collected or accessed by these cookies, pixels, or web beacons.  If you prefer not to receive cookies from our Websites you can disable their use in your browser settings. By doing so you may reduce the functionality of the web pages you view.  Currently, our systems do not respond to browser do-not-track signals, and do not treat such do-not-track signals as “do not sell” signals under CCPA (as defined below).  Lastly, when visiting certain of our Websites, you are provided the option to purchase items or to sign up for our newsletters, white papers, ebooks, or mailing lists, and if you do, we collect the information you supply for use in the promotion of our own businesses to you. If you wish to be removed from our email lists, please email us at info@LRWonline.com or other contact email listed on the particular Material website you were visiting.

What We Do With Information We Collect

Depending on how we obtain your personal data (as described above), we may either be considered a “controller” or a “processor” under applicable law as to that data.  If we are the processor, we will process the data in accordance with the instructions provided to us by the controller of that data.

Regarding data collected as part of our research activities, we collect data in, and in connection with, our studies for research purposes only, and our use of that information is limited to that purpose.  Research participant information and answers are not used by any entity as an aid for sales. In many cases, this information (which is typically anonymized) is shared with the client commissioning the study pursuant to our contract with that client.  In some cases we may need to share personal data with third parties for ancillary services in support of a research project. In these cases, we contractually require the third party to follow all of the same privacy protection regulations as followed by Material. 

As to client data we collect, we do not use the information for any purpose other than to fulfill our obligations to clients. We keep client information secure at all times, and prevent the use and disclosure of it by our employees or any third parties. 

Insofar as we have operations in the United States and in Europe and conduct research globally, any data we collect and process in connection with our business activity may be transferred between or among two or more countries (including from the EU or UK to the US), either within Material or between Material and a client or other third party described above.  In all cases, we will take appropriate measures to ensure that the recipient protects any personal data so transferred adequately in accordance with this privacy policy.  These measures include, in the case of transfers from the EU, the United Kingdom, and Switzerland to the US, adherence to the Privacy Principles described in the EU-US and Swiss-US Privacy Shield Frameworks (please see below for further details).

Information we collect regarding visitors to our Websites, as well as visitors to our social media pages, is used for improvement and maintenance of our Websites and the preparation of reports or compilation of statistics in order to improve our Websites and the general suite of services we offer.  Information supplied on Material Websites in connection with newsletters, white papers, and mailing lists will remain confidential and will be used solely by Material for its own marketing activities. 

We do not sell personal data in the traditional sense, do not rent, sell or give personal data to any third party for the purpose of directly marketing any products or services, and have not done so in the preceding 12 months.  However, you should be aware that certain laws to which we are subject, for example the California Consumer Privacy Act (the “CCPA”), define the terms “sell” and “sale” very broadly, such that some of our research-related activities—for example, the inclusion of a study participant’s photo or video in a market research deliverable for our client—might fall within the definition of “sale” under certain circumstances. 

Under certain circumstances, we may be required to release personal data in response to a legal request from public authorities including to meet national security or law enforcement requirements, or in response to a subpoena or other legal process.

We do not discriminate financially between those who elect to supply their personal data to us and those who elect to not do so, provided, however, that to the extent a survey or other research study—the completion of which would result in the payment of a financial incentive or entry in a sweepstakes—involves the collection of data and you decline to consent to such collection, you would not be able to proceed to participate in the study, and (depending on the specific study) to the extent you are required to supply your contact information at the conclusion of a survey in order for us to fulfill the participation incentive and you decline to provide your contact information, you would not receive the participation incentive.

In all cases, Material will take reasonable steps to ensure the personal data is accurate, complete, current and relevant and being used only for the intended purposes. We will not process personal data in a way that is incompatible with the purposes for which it has been collected or subsequently authorized by the individual.

Summary

Category of consumer personal information collected (non-HR) Source from which collected Purposes for which collected Categories of third parties with whom shared
Name and contact information – research participants Study participant; sometimes, client commissioning study Inviting participation in study; administering studies; fulfilling participation incentive Client commissioning study; Study-related vendors; technology infrastructure vendors
Name and contact information – website visitor Supplied by person himself/herself Marketing of Material’s own services Technology infrastructure vendors
Name and contact information – client officer Supplied by person himself/herself Administration of business Technology infrastructure vendors
Photo, video, or audio of research participant Supplied by person himself/herself Conducting research study Client commissioning study; technology infrastructure vendors
Demographic details, when coupled with some identifying info Supplied by person himself/herself; sometimes, third party vendor Conducting research study Client commissioning study; technology infrastructure vendors
Systems details – visitors to Websites (IP/device ID, browser settings, similar) The computer or device of the person himself/herself Internal analytics; improvement of Website experience Technology infrastructure vendors
Systems details – research participants (IP/device ID, browser settings, similar) The computer or device of the person himself/herself Fraud detection (e.g., “bots”); to allow system to detect language for disclosure notice Technology infrastructure vendors

All information may also be shared among our affiliated group of companies solely for administrative and operations purposes.

Retention of Personal Data

We keep personal data for no longer than necessary for the purposes for which the personal data is collected or processed. The length of time we retain personal data for depends on the purposes for which we collect and use it and/or as required to comply with applicable laws and to establish, exercise or defend our legal rights.

Information Security 

We maintain physical, electronic and procedural security measures to help safeguard client and personal data which are consistent with industry standards and practice and in compliance with applicable law. Third parties that provide us with support or services and that may also receive client or personal data are required by us to maintain security measures similar to ours with respect to such information. We will take reasonable precaution, consistent with industry standards and practice, to protect personal data from loss, misuse, unauthorized access, disclosure, alteration, and destruction.

Your Rights As to Your Personal Data

You have certain rights by law to know certain details regarding our data handling practices generally; this information is described above and elsewhere in this Privacy Policy.  In addition, you have the right to request the following as to any personal data we have about you:  that we provide access to any personal data we hold about you; that we update any of your personal data which is out of date or incorrect; where our basis for processing your personal data is consent, that your consent to further processing be withdrawn; where we received your personal data from a third party, inquire where the data originated; that we delete any personal data which we are holding about you; restrict the way that we process your personal data (including that we no longer “sell” your personal data as such term is defined in the CCPA); prevent the processing of your personal data for direct-marketing purposes; that we provide, or not provide, your personal data to a third party provider of services; that we provide you with a copy of any personal data which we hold about you; that we consider any valid objections which you have to our use of your personal data; and that you not be discriminated against for exercising any of your privacy rights.  Under applicable law, certain personal data may be exempt from some of these requests in certain circumstances. 

If you would like further information about these rights or would like to exercise any of them, including to opt out of the “sale” of your information as defined in the CCPA, please write to us at Material Holdings, LLC, 1900 Ave of the Stars, 16th Floor, Los Angeles, CA 90067 USA, Attn:  Privacy Officer, email us at privacy@LRWGroup.com, call us at (800) 591-6538, or submit your question or request at https://LRWGroup.com/YourDataYourRights/.

By law, as well as for your protection, if you request that we take certain actions as to personal data we have about you, we are required to take certain steps to verify your identity.  If we are not able to verify your identity, we may not be able to respond to your request.  To verify your identity, we request, at point of submission of your request, that you supply your basic contact information, as well as certain other non-personally identifiable information (e.g., information relating to your last interaction with us, such as subject matter and type of study), and we endeavor to match at least two pieces of this information with information in our possession.  In addition, as to those rights permitted by law to be exercisable by an authorized agent on your behalf, in addition to verifying your identity as described above, we require the agent to also supply written authorization from you to act on your behalf, except where restricted by law.

Note, some of these rights may not be applicable to information which we might collect or process from or about you in your capacity as our employee, job applicant, or independent contractor; there are other laws applicable to those relationships which are not addressed in this Privacy Policy.  If you have any questions, please contact the Legal Department.  

Privacy Shield 

Material complies with the EU-US Privacy Shield Framework and the Swiss-US Privacy Shield Framework established by the US Department of Commerce regarding the collection, use, and retention of personal information transferred from the European Union and the United Kingdom and Switzerland to the United States. Material has certified to the Department of Commerce that it adheres to the Privacy Shield Principles of Notice, Choice, Accountability for Onward Transfer, Security, Data Integrity and Purpose Limitation, Access, and Recourse, Enforcement and Liability. If there is any conflict between the policies in this privacy policy and the Privacy Shield Principles, the Privacy Shield Principles shall govern. To learn more about the Privacy Shield program, and to view our certification page, please visit https://www.privacyshield.gov. We will not disclose information to a third party without applying the Notice and Choice Principles, as indicated by the Privacy Shield Principles and the EU-US and Swiss-US Privacy Shield frameworks. We may be liable for inappropriate onward transfer of personal information to third parties.  Please note we are registered with the US Department of Commerce under the names of several of our subsidiaries as listed in the first paragraph of this Privacy Policy. 

Careers 

Any personal data which may be collected in the Careers sections of our Websites will be used solely for purposes of the consideration of possible employment. This information will not be used in connection with research or other aspects of our operations. 

Children

We operate in compliance with the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (“COPPA”), governed by the US Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”). We do not collect, use or disclose information from children under the age of 13 online without a statement of permission from a parent or guardian in the manner required by law. We also do not “sell” (as defined in CCPA) personal information of persons under 16 without affirmative authorization. For more information on COPPA, please visit http://www.ftc.gov/ogc/coppa1.htm

Compliance and Enforcement 

Material is subject to the investigatory and enforcement authority of the FTC.  Also, as members of the Insights Association and ESOMAR, we strive to model our policies according to guidelines promulgated by those organizations. Our internal Privacy Officer is available if you have questions about our Privacy Policy, or for processing a complaint. We also comply with the EU-US and Swiss-US Privacy Shield frameworks as set forth by the U.S. Department of Commerce regarding the collection, use, and retention of data from the European Union and the United Kingdom and Switzerland. If you are concerned about our use of personal or client information, please contact us as described above under the heading “Your Rights As to Your Personal Data.” 

In compliance with the EU-US Privacy Shield and Swiss-US Privacy Shield Principles, Material commits to resolve complaints about your privacy and our collection or use of your personal data. European Union, British, and Swiss individuals with inquiries or complaints regarding this privacy policy should first contact Material at the contact information listed above. 

Material has further committed to refer unresolved privacy complaints under the EU-US and Swiss-US Privacy Shield Principles to an independent dispute resolution mechanism, the BBB EU PRIVACY SHIELD, a non-profit alternative dispute resolution provider located in the United States and operated by the Council of Better Business Bureaus. If you do not receive timely acknowledgment of your complaint, or if your complaint is not satisfactorily addressed, please visit http://www.bbb.org/EU-privacy-shield/for-eu-consumers/ for more information and to file a complaint.  Please note we are registered with BBB under the name of one of our subsidiaries, Lieberman Research Worldwide. 

Under limited circumstances, if your complaint is not resolved through these channels, a binding arbitration option may be available before a Privacy Shield Panel.

Finally, if required or permitted by law, you may also make a complaint to the data protection authority in the EU country where we may have operations or where we process personal data that relates to offering goods or service to you in the EU.

Changes to the Privacy Policy

We may update this Privacy Policy from time to time by posting an amended version of the statement on one or more of our Websites. Please refer to this policy regularly. 

Last update:  July 8 2020