Peer to Patent – public review of patent applications

In effort to at least do something about the current state of affairs with regard to the patent process, the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is starting an online pilot project called “Peer to Patent,” which will allow informed members of the public (in theory) to review patent applications to help determine if they are valid based on their expert knowledge. The USPTO will hold a briefing on May 12th, 2006 in Alexandria, VA to discuss the project. IBM has stepped up to support the project by agreeing to have its patents reviewed. Since a number of the recent patent issues have direct bearing on geospatial technologies, it will be interesting to see how this pilot project is received.

Via BoingBoing and Tech_Space