This site is owned and operated by the City of Melbourne using software licensed from Harvest Digital Planning (Harvest). For details on how the City of Melbourne collects and protects your personal information, refer to their Privacy Policy below. For details of how Harvest may access personal information, please refer to Harvest’s Privacy Policy.

The City of Melbourne takes the privacy of the participants using this site very seriously.

Our collection, use and disclosure of your personal information is regulated by the Victorian Privacy and Data Protection Act 2014. You can find more information about your privacy rights at the Office of the Victorian Information Commissioner’s website.

This privacy statement applies to Participate Melbourne. For information about the broader collection and use of personal information by the City of Melbourne, please refer to our Privacy Policy.

Site visit data

This site’s web-server automatically collects the following non-personal information (i.e. clickstream data) for statistical and system administration purposes only:

  • your server (or IP) address
  • the day and time you visited the site
  • the pages you visited on our site
  • the address of the last page you visited
  • the operating system you are using
  • rough geographic location (down to the city)
  • language (e.g. American English)
  • internet service provider (e.g. Telstra)
  • the type of browser and version you are using.

To the extent that this data could make you identifiable, the City of Melbourne will not attempt to identify individuals from the records the server automatically generates unless necessary to investigate a breach of law or regulation.

Member registration

We collect information from you when you sign-up for Participate Melbourne.

Required information includes:

  • Name (this is published on the site alongside any public comments you make)
  • Email address (this will not be made public)

By providing an email address you help us protect the integrity of the discussion from individuals and groups who may attempt to unduly influence the outcomes of the consultation process. For example, we check the database to ensure each user has a single email account on the site. We also frequently review the site for trolls and spammers.

The email address you provide will be used by the City of Melbourne to send you information and updates about Participate Melbourne projects. You can unsubscribe from these updates at any time.

User feedback

We collect information that you provide via the following feedback tools:

  • comments and votes in forums
  • stories
  • surveys
  • quick polls
  • interactive maps

This information is analysed and interpreted by City of Melbourne staff to help inform the creation of better projects, plans and policies.


Cookies are used on our site, but they do not collect any personal information. For the most part they are sessional and just contain system-generated values to identify the user's session for statistical and system administration purposes only.

Demographic information (optional)

We ask optional demographic questions when you sign-up to help us determine whether we are getting a diverse cross-section of participants.

These questions are:

  • age group
  • gender
  • your relationship with the city

Social media collection statement

If you use your Facebook, Twitter, or other social networking sites (‘SNS’) account information to log in and/or authenticate with a City of Melbourne website, we will collect and store a unique user ID provided by your SNS.

As a City of Melbourne website user, you can choose to log in and/or authenticate with a SNS, such as Facebook. To do so, you must use your account credentials (typically username and password) for your SNS. Your SNS will provide City of Melbourne with a unique user ID which we can use to identify you on our websites. City of Melbourne will retain this user ID, keep it private and use it to identify you and enable your access to features on our websites.

If you choose to sign up with your SNS profile the City of Melbourne will request to collect your name and email. You can cancel this request and then manually enter this information through the Participate email registration process.

We encourage you to read the privacy policies and other statements of the SNS you use.

When you sign up for a user account you provide two types of information:

1. publicly available information

2. information available to both City of Melbourne and Harvest Digital Planning.

Publicly available information

Publicly available information is limited to your name and any comments you leave under that name in the forums or other feedback tools on Participate Melbourne.

You can use your first name or an anonymous username if you do not want your full name attached to forum and guestbook comments, stories or questions.

Feedback (including overall results of polls and surveys, and in some instances, quotes from forums and surveys) may be published in publicly available reports at the end of the consultation period.

Please note that the City of Melbourne is subject to the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Vic) legislation. The Freedom of Information Act 1982 gives individuals and corporations a general right of access to documents held by Council. This includes documents created by Council, documents held by contracted service providers and documents supplied to Council by external organisations or individuals.

Information available to both City of Melbourne and Harvest Digital Planning includes:

  • all information from the sign-up form
  • comments, questions, stories, guestbook posts
  • survey responses, quick poll responses, map pins
  • general site activity such as document downloads, videos viewed, images viewed etc.
  • information on the technology used to access the site.

Disclosure of personal information

City of Melbourne will take all necessary measures to prevent unauthorised access to, or disclosure of, your personal information.

External organisations to which personal information is disclosed include City of Melbourne’s contracted Service Providers who perform various services for and on behalf of City of Melbourne. These contractors have agreed to be bound by the provisions of the Privacy and Data Protection Act 2014. Information provided to these contractors is limited to contact details provided by you whilst contacting us.

We will also ensure that your personal information is not disclosed to other individuals, institutions and authorities outside Council except if required or authorised by law or explicitly permitted by you. For example, in the event of an investigation into suspected unlawful or improper activity, a law enforcement agency or government agency may exercise its legal authority to inspect the web server's records (e.g. in relation to hacking or abusive messages).

Access and correction

Requests for access to documents containing personal information and held by the City of Melbourne are handled under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 and can be addressed to the:

Manager Governance and Legal
City of Melbourne
GPO Box 1603


This website privacy statement does not apply to other websites we may link to. We recommend you read the privacy statement when you access another site.

You can contact the Council’s Privacy Officer at if you have any enquires concerning Council's privacy procedures.

Updated July 2019