01/06/2011

'Peer To Patent' Scheme Launched

An innovative new tool designed to help improve the patent application process was launched today by the Minister for Intellectual Property, Baroness Wilcox.

Peer to Patent is a review website which allows experts from the scientific and technology community to view and comment on patent applications.

During the six month pilot up to 200 applications in the computing field will be gradually uploaded for review on the website. These will include a range of inventions from computer mice to complex processor operations.

Today, the first group of applications have been uploaded to the Peer to Patent website (www.peertopatent.org.uk) and are now open for review by registered users for three months. Following this, the system will create a summary of the comments which will be sent to a Patent Examiner at the Intellectual Property Office (IPO). Examiners will then consider these as part of the patent review process.

Speaking about the launch in the UK today, Baroness Wilcox said: “Patent applications granted after using the Peer to Patent website review will be potentially stronger, giving businesses better protection to grow their innovative ideas. This will give the IPO access to a wider body of knowledge when deciding whether a patent should be granted.

“The pilot will give experts the opportunity to comment on patent applications and share their vital expertise before patents are granted. It will also mean that inventions already known in the wider community will be filtered out more readily.

“Peer to Patent is a step forward in supporting growth by reinforcing the patent bedrock on which innovative businesses thrive.”

The UK pilot goes live today and follows on from successful Peer to Patent websites that have already been run in the USA and Australia. The project was developed by the New York Law School (NYLS) from the work of Professor Beth Noveck. The pilot will end on 31 December 2011.

(BMcN/GK)

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