There’s no such thing as FSC-certified pixels.

I was recently looking at the PDF version of a Fairfax Connector bus schedule, when I noticed the FSC logo on the last page. Normally I’m quite pleased to see the FSC logo on a printed document, but in this case, it raised some questions. The certificate code on the document is SGSNA-COC-003887, which the FSC’s database indicates is issued to Global Printing of Alexandria, VA. Now, suppose I print out a copy of the schedule for my own useā€”has it been printed by Global Printing? Has it been printed in a way that complies with the requirements for FSC certification? Has the chain of custody been maintained? No, certainly not. I couldn’t tell you what kind of paper my printer has in it right now; I think it’s at least 30% recycled content, but I’m not sure. The FSC logo certainly doesn’t belong on anything coming out of my printer, and it doesn’t belong on a document on the screen, either; there’s no paper there. I would think that the FSC logo should be applied to a document in the latest possible step before printing; that is, it should not appear in a file which is intended for use both in print and online. Only the printed document should exhibit the FSC logo, and only when it actually complies with the requirements for FSC certification. I can’t find the FSC’s guidelines for logo usage online, but I would be surprised if they don’t say essentially the same thing.