What is the policy around phone-home features?

The idea is that I want to know how many websites are using my plugin and what the current version of both the plugin and WordPress is. That’s it. I only need the URL, not the IP address, and no names or emails.

Is there any Envato regulation around this topic? My phone-home code would be really simple, and I want to use it for statistics only.

Most items that require activation do this by extension, so it’s not really a problem. I would just encourage you to be transparent to buyers about what data you collect, and to keep it as minimal as possible given the current climate on privacy.

I don’t require activation.

And like I said before, I only collect minimal data. Would you have any suggestions on where to put this home-phone notice? In the plugin’s settings screen?

Also, is this official advice? :slight_smile:

Regarding privacy, I am aware of it, I have an analytics plugin – Active Analytics by butterflymedia | CodeCanyon –, and it’s fully GDPR compatible.


No, not official advice. I’ve never found any literature from Envato advising against any such data collection. I’m merely advising on what is standard behavior by other authors.

Envato has expressed to other authors here (via the support system) that collecting the domains and/or server IPs of installations is fully permissible.

If the item clearly states that it collects certain telemetry, and so long as that telemetry has meaningful purpose and is used in good faith, then it doesn’t cross any official rules. It would be even better if that telemetry was made optional – such is the case with my own items.

If you do make it optional, then the plugin’s settings area would probably be fine. If the telemetry is required, I would personally advise posting a notice in the item’s description on the marketplace (for full transparency), but most authors don’t do this anyways.

For any official guidance, definitely reach out to Author Support.

Got it! Thanks!

I don’t want to make it optional, as I need to know the exact-ish number of websites. I’ll make this clearly visible in the item’s description and in the plugin’s settings.

It’s going to be URL, plugin version, WordPress version, and PHP version. I guess I’ll be fine.

Thanks for your help.

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