New York, NY (October 19, 2010)—New York Law School’s Center for Patent Innovations (CPI) and the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) today announced the launch of a new Peer To Patent pilot, set to begin on October 25 and run through September 30, 2011. The pilot will be expanded from the previous pilot program—which included software and business methods applications—to include applications in biotechnology, bioinformatics, telecommunications, and speech recognition.
“By encouraging participation by inventors in a
wider array of fields, we hope to gather information that will allow us to
further test the value of peer review to patent examination,” said
USPTO Commissioner for Patents Robert Stoll.
“In our earlier pilot we established that engaging the public in a collaborative effort to enhance the examination process works and now look forward to proving it can scale as well. We are excited about the opportunities presented by this new Peer To Patent pilot,” Mark Webbink, Executive Director of CPI, said. “Not only does it continue this preeminent test of open government, but it provides law students from New York Law School and other participating law schools a terrific learning laboratory. We look forward to our continued collaboration with the USPTO.”
Peer To Patent, begun in 2007, opens the patent examination process to public participation to accelerate the process and improve the quality of patents. Under the program, inventors agree to have their patent applications posted on the www.peertopatent.org Web site. Volunteer scientific and technical experts then discuss the applications and submit prior art they think might be relevant to determining if an invention is new and non-obvious, as the law requires. After the review period, the prior art is sent to the USPTO patent examiners for their consideration during examination. The original pilot opened the patent examination process up to online public participation for the first time in history.
The project has already had a successful pilot with the USPTO from June 2007 to June 2009, in which more than 600 items of prior art were submitted for 189 applications and more than 2,700 registered peer reviewers from over 140 countries participated. This prior art was relied upon by examiners in issuing first office actions in approximately 20% of the cases.
Changes in the new pilot include:
• peer review time to search for prior art reduced to three months
• the number of eligible participating applications expanded from 400 to 1,000
• the number of eligible subject matter classes increased threefold
• the number of items of prior art forwarded to the USPTO reduced from ten to six items
The Peer To Patent pilot is funded by corporate sponsors GE, HP, IBM, Article One Partners, Microsoft, Open Invention Network, and Red Hat.
For more information about Peer To Patent, please visit www.peertopatent.org.
the Center for Patent Innovations
New York Law School formed the Center for Patent Innovations in June 2008 as a part of the Institute for Information Law & Policy. The Center is focused on bringing real-world technology solutions to improve government operations, particularly in the area of patent law. The Center for Patent Innovations will continue to pursue innovations in patent law and has launched a number of projects related to Peer To Patent, such as Post-Issue Peer To Patent, which extends the community-based approach of finding prior art relevant to re-examination of patents that have already been granted.
About New York Law School
Founded in 1891, New York Law School is an independent law school located in lower Manhattan near the city’s centers of law, government, and finance. New York Law School’s renowned faculty of prolific scholars has built the School’s strength in such areas as constitutional law, civil and human rights, labor and employment law, media and information law, urban legal studies, international and comparative law, and a number of interdisciplinary fields. The School is noted for its nine academic centers: Center on Business Law & Policy, Center on Financial Services Law, Center for International Law, Center for New York City Law, Center for Professional Values and Practice, Center for Real Estate Studies, Diane Abbey Law Center for Children and Families, Institute for Information Law & Policy, and Justice Action Center. New York Law School has more than 13,000 graduates and enrolls some 1,500 students in its full- and part-time J.D. program and its four advanced degree programs in financial services law, real estate, tax, and mental disability law studies. www.nyls.edu
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