Pearson, a British-owned education publishing and assessment service for schools and companies, has revealed ambitions to profit from secondhand textbook sales by converting them into non-fungible tokens (NFTs).
In reaction to Pearson’s interim results, business CEO Andy Bird described his idea to offer digital textbooks as NFTs, which will allow the publisher to track ownership even after the book has changed hands.
This new plan is the latest move in his efforts to shift the focus of the publication to digital. It follows Pearson+, a subscription app that provides students with access to 1,500 titles for $14.99 a month.
Selling books as NFTs is not a new concept, but it has yet to take off in the same way that the NFT market for visual art has.
If Pearson’s use of NFTs proves successful, this method of selling digital copies of books may become more prevalent among major publishing companies. Bird is also considering how the company may use other developing technologies: he has a big team focusing on the ramifications of the metaverse and what that could imply for Pearson.