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Be Careful What You Wish For, IBM

Open Opposition, sounds more like something that the NSA would lock you up for, but we are hoping that we have the backing of IBM on this one.

"There's a huge interest in making sure that only good patents are earned," says Jim Stallings, IBM's vice president for intellectual property. Mr. Stallings predicts that "thousands of subject-matter experts" will get a chance to weigh in on patents."

Mr. Stallings says the Armonk, N.Y., company thinks its own patents "are all at the quality level we'd like them to be at," but he says he welcomes any improvement that comes from the open-source process. By and large, the effort is directed at patents filed by other, particularly smaller, companies. Several, known to detractors as "patent trolls" and to their supporters as the aggrieved little guys, have won large infringement verdicts against bigger companies.

We wonder what IBM will say when the shoe is on the other foot and some of their pending apps are shot down by the likes of the IdeaCop(tm) readers.

Moreover, since we at PatenTrakker(tm) have been doing the patent reports thing for years now and have a system that allows for pre-processing of art for the reviewers, it seemed ironic to us at IdeaCop(tm) to hear that:

"Details haven't been worked out, but IBM hopes that people and companies will be able to register on the office's Web site to be notified when patents in their areas of interest are granted."

Then again, we just took it in stride and figured that maybe the folks doing the review will take the USPTO money and resources but use our tips as well, for free.


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