Here's another in my series of rants about how we should change the academic world -- paper reviews. Although some people claim they like reviewing papers, I seem to be a receptacle for evaluating crappy ones. I therefore do not enjoy it!
Currently, papers are reviewed mostly as follows: after it is submitted, a "program committee" who can see the authors' names decides who are the best N people to review it (taking into account area of expertise, conflicts of interest, etc.); the reviewers write a review and remain anonymous forever; a decision based on these reviews is made on whether to accept the paper or not.
The problem I see is that there is very little incentive to write high-quality reviews. Heck, there is very little incentive to even review a paper at all because to a large extent reviewers get zero credit. Unless you are a member of the program committee, your name is usually not even posted anywhere. This, combined with the fact that most submitted papers are not very good, makes me not want to review at all.
So here's what I propose: High-quality reviews should be published. If the review is positive and explains why the paper is of importance, it should be published along with the paper (some journals like Science and Nature are already doing something similar). If the review is negative and gives a non-trivial reason of why the paper should not be published (e.g., a clever break of a cryptosystem, a little-known fact that makes a study useless, etc.), the review should be published instead of the paper. (This should only be done with papers that seem like good ideas at first, for which the reviewer found a subtle but critical flaw.)
Oh, and stop sending me lame papers, please.