Thinking About the Future

Getting ready for new models in sales and licensing

Digital content changes and complicates deal-making for books worldwide. Our rights have always been sorted by language and by geography: what we’ve referred to as territorial rights. In a digital world where every publisher anywhere can reach any reader everywhere, the commercial logic of territorial rights is challenged.

At the same time, digital opens up all sorts of other monetization opportunities that were never simple to deal with, but are much more complex when considered on a global scale. We’re already seeing a rise in licensing opportunities — all those enhanced ebooks and apps and web sites now being developed often want to use chunks of content that first appeared in a book. And there’s a consensus in some circles that subscription models will prevail in the long run; it’s a fair question to ask whether our contracts and deal-making skills are ready for them.

And a major challenge for all publishers going forward is rights management: having a clear and present understanding of what rights are available for transactions on what basis at any time.

Some of these models may be a few years in the future, but they will draw on content for which the contracts are being negotiated now. Publishers need to understand the future potential or risk of dealing themselves out of the game before it begins.

This panel will feature a senior executive from a European publisher, a rights and export director from a major American house, a literary agent, and an executive from Copyright Clearance Center, the US not-for-profit that enables secondary and collective licensing of content, discussing how this digital future will unfold and how publishers can prepare for it.


Ed Nawotka
Editor-In-Chief, Publishing Perspectives

Ed Nawotka is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Publishing Perspectives, an online magazine for the international publishing industry that has been called “the BBC of the book world.”

Prior to launching Publishing Perspectives, he worked as book columnist forBloomberg News and daily news editor of Publishers Weekly.

He has appeared as a guest on various television and radio programs, including those on NPR, PRI, BBC, and C-SPAN, and has lectured at numerous universities and institutions. He currently serves on the Advisory Council of the University of Texas Libraries.


Tracey Armstrong
President and Chief Executive Officer, Copyright Clearance Center (CCC)

Tracey Armstrong is the President and Chief Executive Officer at Copyright Clearance Center. With over 20 years experience in rights management and with CCC, she has led the transformation of the company’s global copyright licensing solutions to meet the needs of today’s digital publishing world, distributing over $1 billion to rightsholders.

Cyrus Kheradi
Senior Vice President, International Sales & Marketing, Random House

Cyrus is a veteran of the global book trade arena with over two decades of international sales, marketing and distribution experience.  Before joining Random House in 2010, Cyrus held various international sales and marketing positions with Simon & Schuster, the former Time Warner Book Group, St. Martin’s Press, and Bantam Doubleday Dell.

Simon Lipskar
Agent, Writers House

Simon Lipskar is an agent at Writers House, a literary agency in New York. He represents a wide range of writers, including major authors in literary and commercial fiction, narrative nonfiction, and fiction for young readers.