Today in a particular patent application I uploaded two PDFs in Patentcenter. The Ack Receipt says I uploaded five PDFs (which is not true). When I try to match up the three non-existent PDFs that the Ack Receipt says I uploaded (which I did not) with the three supposedly corresponding PDFs in IFW, the file names do not match and the SHA-512 hashes (message digests) do not match and the file sizes do not match. Nothing about this part of the Ack Receipt is true.
This is really discouraging. If you can’t trust an Ack Receipt, then the entire e-filing system cannot be trusted.
What happened is that I uploaded a PDF file (named “P187092US00.pdf“) that contains a specification, claims, and abstract. Following USPTO procedure, I indicated the starting and ending page numbers for each of the three sections of the PDF file. I also uploaded an Express Request for immediate national-phase processing (“express-request.pdf“). The total number of PDF files that I uploaded was two.
What the Ack Receipt should have said was that I uploaded two PDF files. Instead, the Ack Receipt said this:
Documents Total documents: 4
|P187092US00-SPEC.pdf (1-24)||24||Specification||124 KB|
|P187092US00-CLM.pdf (25-30)||6||Claims||97 KB|
|P187092US00-ABST.pdf (31-31)||1||Abstract||84 KB|
|express-request.pdf||1||Transmittal Letter||36 KB|
I did not upload any file with the name P187092US00-SPEC.pdf. I did not upload any file with the name P187092US00-CLM.pdf. I did not upload any file with the name P187092US00-ABST.pdf.
What the Ack Receipt should have displayed is two SHA-512 hashes (two message digests). Instead, the Ack Receipt said this:
|DOCUMENT||MESSAGE DIGEST (SHA-512)|
There is no file anywhere in IFW (or in SCORE) with a message digest matching any of these five message digests. I do have on my own computer the file P187092US00.pdf and its SHA-512 hash does match the hash listed in the Ack Receipt. I do have on my own computer the file express-request.pdf and its SHA-512 hash does match the hash listed in the Ack Receipt.
But if you were to look in IFW to try to find files that supposedly correspond to any of these five files, you not succeed. The file called “express-request.pdf” is renamed 184378_17754023_03-25-2022_TRAN.LET.PDF in IFW and its SHA-512 hash is very different:
The file size for the Express Request has also changed. When uploaded it was 36 KB as shown in the Ack Receipt. When downloaded again from IFW its file size is 10 KB.
There is a “claims” file but its name when downloaded from IFW is very different — 184378_17754023_03-25-2022_CLM.PDF. Its SHA-512 hash when downloaded from IFW is also very different:
The size of the CLM file from IFW is 220 KB which is wildly different from the size of the CLM file imagined by the Ack Receipt (a mere 97 KB).
Note as well the bafflingly large stated file sizes for the three non-existent files P187092US00-SPEC.pdf and P187092US00-CLM.pdf and P187092US00-ABST.pdf. From context one more or less assumes that the USPTO is saying that the way these three files came into existence is that the USPTO had split up the file P187092US00.pdf into three smaller files. But look at the file sizes. The file P187092US00.pdf has a size of 141 KB. That is a number that I am able to objectively confirm because that file is on the hard drive of my computer. Then add up the purported sizes of the three supposedly smaller files. The sum is 305 KB. One wonders how the three supposedly smaller files add up to more than twice the size of the source file.
As best I can discern, the files named P187092US00-SPEC.pdf and P187092US00-CLM.pdf and P187092US00-ABST.pdf never actually existed. I never created such files. No such files ever existed in my computer. No files with those names appear anywhere in IFW. No files with those names appear anywhere in SCORE. No files with those SHA-512 hashes exist anywhere on my computer. No files with those SHA-512 hashes exist anywhere in IFW. No files with those SHA-512 hashes exist anywhere in SCORE. No files with those file sizes exist anywhere on my computer. No files with those file sizes exist anywhere in IFW. No files with those file sizes exist anywhere in SCORE.
Notwithstanding all of this, the Ack Receipt says:
This Acknowledgement Receipt evidences receipt on the noted date by the USPTO of the indicated documents, characterized by the applicant, and including page counts, where applicable. It serves as evidence of receipt similar to a Post Card, as described in MPEP 503.
This is simply false.