We describe the development and deployment of a web-based authoring capability, the first implementation of which is used for data entry and management in support of the ClinicalTrials.gov web site. The system facilitates efficient collection of summary protocol information from multiple geographically-dispersed organizations. We explain the motivation for developing this capability, and cite critical design goals. We then describe system design, implementation and operation, focusing on essential aspects of each. We conclude with a summary of the extent to which we met our stated objectives.