US Patent Office refuses to accept upside-down faxes. #rsrh

Not as in, ‘flipped over.’ As in, ‘rotated 180 degrees.’ Speaking as somebody who is cynical about bureaucracies, I suspect (contra BNet and probably Fark Geek) that there was a reason for this once; and it was probably even a legitimate reason. That it makes no sense now suggests that the reason has quietly been made obsolete (probably by technology)… only by then the people that instituted the policy were gone or not in a position to deal with the problem, and the new people only know that this is the way things were already done, and, well, there’s a form letter. So just fax the stupid thing the right way, OK?

We have an entire government full of these sorts of situations. Which is one key reason why a lot of us want to hack back what we’ve already got with a machete, not let it grow larger.


  • matt says:

    The patent office accually gives a reason why they return upside down faxes.

  • Moe_Lane says:

    As I said, I’m sure that there was a *reason*. 🙂

  • […] US Patent Office can’t except faxes that are upside down. The used to when Einstein worked there because he knew how to rotate a document 180 degrees, but […]

  • ssoerens says:

    I read the reason – well, the first part of it anyway. What the guy was saying was basically “the system won’t let us process [it]”.

    In any of the jobs and positions that I’ve held, anyone who told the boss “the system won’t let us…” was scarcely allowed to finish the sentence before being vigorously marched out the door, termination notice in hand. Private sector bosses do not let ‘the system’ limit them, do not take instruction from machines, and have a deep and abiding aversion to those worthless idiots who do.

    Whoever wrote that FAQ response for the Patent Office is a mindless dolt.

  • redc1c4 says:

    what’s really amusing is that they are still using microfilm for archival purposes….

    hello!!!!! welcome to the 21st century…..


  • Bad Science says:

    As someone who used to service microfilm equipment before it all became obsolete, there is a dial on all but the very oldest and cheapest reader/printers that allow the user to rotate the image 360 degrees. Easier than lifting a piece of paper with your hands. Although I would admit microfilming a fax would probably look like crap either way.

RSS feed for comments on this post.

Site by Neil Stevens | Theme by TheBuckmaker.com