A second false statement on the USPTO web site

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(Update June 20, 2023 — the false statement has returned to the USPTO web site — see blog article.)

Yesterday I reported (blog article) on a first false statement on the USPTO web site.  Here is a second false statement that appeared on the USPTO web site as recently as two days ago (screen shot above):

The USPTO strongly recommends submitting Specification, Claims, and/or Abstract in DOCX format which provides better data accuracy.

It is the PDF filing system, which has earned the trust of applicants and practitioners for over twenty years, that provides better data accuracy.  The DOCX filing system provides poorer data accuracy when compared with the PDF filing system.

An alert member of the Patentcenter listserv captured the screen shot that appears above, and posted it to the Patentcenter listserv, on May 29, 2023.  This listserv member asked:

Isn’t this false advertising or improper legal advice?

Several hours after that, the USPTO deleted the false statement from the USPTO web site.

2 Replies to “A second false statement on the USPTO web site”

  1. If you look at the statement from the perspective of Reed or whoever it is that typesets the patents, the statement is true, in a limited way: the submission of a “docx document” means that instead of the publisher doing an OCR process on a pdf submitted by the applicant (or the TIFF image file that the PTO converts that pdf into), the PTO now converts the docx file to some other format, which is then given to the publisher. That new, converted format was what the publisher asked for, so what the publisher gets from the PTO is some document that the publisher doesn’t need to play with, it just paginates it into two single-spaced columns in a very small font and presto! There’s the patent document, with (hopefully) no errors between what the PTO provided and what the publisher gave back to the PTO.

    Of course, the only accuracy that ought to count – viz., the accuracy of the final product vis-a-vis what the applicant submitted – isn’t part of the calculation.

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