View Full Version : Mastercard/Visa Logo....copyrighted?

Jeff Mohr
07-22-2009, 10:27 AM

I do craft fairs, etc. I was looking for an engraved sign in wood that said I accept Mastercard/Visa. I figure it'll be a neat touch since I sell mostly woodworking stuff anyway.

So far, I've been told the logo's may be copyrighted. Anyone know if they are? Or does reprinting them for use at a craft fair acceptable? Seems kind of silly if you can't use the logos to advertise their services...but who knows?

I'm looking for something that says:

We Accept:

and then the logo.

Scott Shepherd
07-22-2009, 10:44 AM
I don't think you'll have any issues with it. It is copyright protected, but I believe they wouldn't care if you were using it to promote their services. Now, if you were engraving their logo and selling it, you'd have an issue.

Just displaying it as something you accept, I don't think you should worry. You can contact them directly fairly easily and find out if you are really worried about doing it. I'm sure they would be happy to help.

Mike Null
07-22-2009, 11:19 AM
There is no problem and if you'll check their sites you'll probably find downloads. They may be on your Corel clipart cd as well.

pete hagan
07-22-2009, 11:36 AM
Title says it all. This is where I have gone for numereous logos.


Jeff Mohr
07-22-2009, 12:39 PM
Thanks for all the input. Pretty much what I thought was the case.

Here's the problem, however. I don't own a laser/engraver and cannot do it myself so I would need someone to do it for me. However, they would most likely need to sell it to me. How does this work?

Dan Hintz
07-22-2009, 12:53 PM
No no no, guys... the companies are very particular with how you use/display their logos. A few years back I got a letter in the mail specifying the latest "updated" rules. They specify how big the signs can be both at a physical location as well as when displayed on web pages. Assuming you're a vendor who accepts their cards, they'll provide you POS displays for free, just log on to their sites and select which displays you'd like... you don't even pay shipping. This is the easiest way they can decide the shape/size of their logos.

And they are 100% copyrighted. Every single major logo you see out there is copyrighted, so there's little point in questioning it.

Stephen Beckham
07-22-2009, 2:16 PM
Concur with Dan - your Credit Card Processor should be willing to provide you with as many copies as you'd like to have to display. And yes there are larger sizes for different uses. Contact them - threaten to switch to a new provider and throw a name out there like NPC or Crecent who are steeling a lot of customers from processors with their deals right now. You'd probably be able to get some point drops too if they thought you were swapping.

Zachery Thomas
07-22-2009, 3:00 PM
I don't think they're going to supply Jeff with a nice wood engraved sign, more likely the typical plastic junk. I guess on the plus side it'll make the wood crafts look better :-)



I think you're ok, and if they complain just take it down (and display their competitors only!).


Dan Hintz
07-23-2009, 12:27 PM
I don't think they're going to supply Jeff with a nice wood engraved sign, more likely the typical plastic junk.
Of course. But according to the agreement signed when you begin accepting cards, you're not allowed to use their logos in any way not condoned by them... and they don't condone anything other than what they have listed in their rules. I do not believe wooden versions are acceptable, though I'd have to reread the rules to be sure. These rules are mandated by the owning companies (MasterCard, Visa, etc.), not the intermediate processor, so you can't really go to a "competitor" if you don't like it.

Will you get busted for it? Most likely not, unless it's shown on TV or in a major paper and you're touting how great it is. But just because you're not busted for it...

Jeff Mohr
07-24-2009, 9:31 AM
Looks like cheap plastic display it is...... :(

Dan Hintz
07-24-2009, 12:30 PM
Meh... I'd do it in the wood if it looks nice and take my chances, seeing as how the risk is small. According to our agreements, we're not allowed to keep credit card numbers on file after the sale is finished... if that's the case, then how do all of the companies that do keep them on file (Yahoo, AT&T, etc.) get away with it? They're bigger and bring in more money!