Pearson to soon sell its textbooks as NFTs

August 08, 2022

By Anjali Kochhar

Textbook publisher Pearson has plans to turn its books from second-hand sales into NFTs, its chief executive has said.

It is known that educational books are often sold more than once as students sell study resources when they no longer require them.

Earlier it was not possible for publishers to make money from second-hand sales but the rise of digital textbooks has created an opportunity there.

NFTs confer ownership of a unique digital item by recording it on a decentralised digital register known as a blockchain.

“In the analogue world, a Pearson textbook was resold up to seven times, and we would only participate in the first sale,” Pearson’s CEO Andy Bird told Bloomberg, explaining that “technology like blockchain and NFTs allows us to participate in every sale of that particular item as it goes through its life”.

This new plan is the latest development of Bird’s bid to move the publisher in a digital direction. It follows the launch of the subscription app, Pearson+ last year, which gives students access to 1,500 titles for $14.99 a month.

It should be noted that selling books as NFTs is not an entirely new concept, although it has yet to take off in the same way that the visual art NFT market has.

Bird is exploring how other new technologies might be used by the company: he has a “whole team” working on “the implications of the metaverse and what that could mean for us”, he said.

About the author

Anjali Kochhar covers cryptocurrency stories in India as well as globally. Having been in the field of media and journalism for over three years now, she has developed a sharp news sense and works hard to present information that goes beyond the obvious. She is an avid reader and loves writing on a wide range of subjects.

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