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Patent Applications Open to Public Online Commentary?

The United States Patent and Trademark Office has launched a community review project according to an article in the Washington Post.  The peer review project will post patent applications to the internet and invite comments on prior art submissions from the internet community. The complete article can be found here and is reproduced below for your convenience: By Alan Sipres Washington Post Staff Writer Monday, March 5, 2007; 3:34 PM The government is about to start opening up the process of reviewing patents to the modern font of wisdom: the Internet. The Patent and Trademark Office is starting a pilot project that will not only post patent applications on the Web and invite comments but also use a community rating system designed to push the most respected comments to the top of the file, for serious consideration by the agency’s examiners. A first for the federal government, the system resembles the one used by Wikipedia, the popular user-created online encyclo