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U.S. Patent Office Wants Help To Find Bogus Patent Claims

     
10:54 am on Sep 21, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Members of the public are being asked by the US Patent Office to help weed out bogus patent applications.

It wants to the public to contribute to a website that will spot applications for patents on technologies that have already been invented.

People will also be able to flag up applications on the site they think are bogus and enlist help to investigate.

"Our hope is that Ask Patents will reduce the number of patents mistakenly granted for obvious, unoriginal non-inventions, especially around software," said Stack Exchange boss Joel Spolsky U.S. Patent Office Wants Help To Find Bogus Patent Claims [bbc.co.uk]
1:43 pm on Sept 21, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Can't the Patent Office use Google to see if a particular software function already exists, you know, like when someone applies for a patent for ecommerce shopping carts?... :o

Actually the public comments thing is a good idea, crowdsourcing feedback.
4:24 pm on Sept 21, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Actually the public comments thing is a good idea, crowd sourcing feedback.


I agree, but.....

Are they saying they are not capable of doing this themselves? I would have thought that was part and parcel of being a patents office.

If that is the case, I also wonder if 'public comments' will be abused by some less scrutable elements of the public.
8:09 pm on Sept 21, 2012 (gmt 0)

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I'll be darned. All this time I thought they were doing it on purpose. "Hey, look, nobody ever got around to patenting the wheel. We could make a fortune!"