In the (snail) mail this week I happened to get an ad for the Visa Black Card, which Visa is pitching as "exclusive," though I'm guessing that exclusivity is mostly based on finding enough suckers to pay a $500 annual fee for the card. Anyway, as I was tossing the application into the shredder, one thing caught my eye. The pamphlet cover lists out six marketing bullet points, with the fourth one being that the card is "patent pending." This struck me as odd on a couple of fronts:
- Why is the fact that it's patent pending a marketing point? I could maybe sorta barely understand it if it was an issued patent. But a pending one? That means next to nothing other than that you spent some money to file a patent application. To me, that means you may have wasted a lot of money -- which could explain the $500 fee.
- A patent on what? On the idea of a "black card" or some other swanky exclusive credit card? Or on the physical card itself?
So, I did a little Googling, and turned up the following: apparently the patent filing (at the time of this announcement, just a provisional patent filing) is is on the physical card itself
because it includes "carbon and/or carbon based material." I guess if you're the sort of person interested in spending so much money on a credit card, perhaps you'll pay extra to have carbon in your credit card. Still doesn't make much sense here...