RightsTechSummit.com is published under a joint venture between Digital Media Wire and Concurrent Media Strategies, LLC. It’s goal is to provide a hub for news, analysis and opinion on emerging technologies and technology-enabled strategies for the management, authentication and monetization of creative rights across diverse media industries.

One of the goals of the event is the establishment of industry best practices for the rapidly evolving RightsTech ecosystem. Issues and discussion groups at the inaugural RightsTech Summit include:

  • Machine Readable Rights: One fundamental goal of RightsTech is to replace human intermediaries with machines in transactions involving content rights, including sales, licensing, royalty collection and accounting, attribution, and payment processing. To do that, rights information has to be reduced to machine-readable forms. What are the latest developments in specific industries including music, film/video, publishing, graphic arts? What are the challenges to collect and standardize rights information into machine-readable formats?
  • Smart Contracts: Smart contracts are computer protocols that facilitate, verify, or enforce the negotiation or performance of a contract, or that make a contractual clause unnecessary. What can they do? How do you draft them? How to translate legal concepts into code?
  • Shared Responsibilities: One of the hallmarks of RightsTech is the reliance on distributed and transparent ledgers to record transactions and payments without any central point of control. Can and will industries built in large part around centralized and proprietary access to information and revenue streams transition to shared management of information? Whose business will get disrupted in the process? Why did the Global Repertoire Database initiative fail?
  • Blockchain and Big Data: Related to the shared responsibilities problem. Distributed ledgers like blockchain rely on ecosystem participants to donate computer processing time and storage to the cause. But as the datasets grow larger, the demand for CPU cycles and storage grows with it, creating an incentives problem. How can/will media industries solve the incentives problem?
  • RightsTech in the Enterprise: How can studios, record labels, publishers, PROs, etc., use RightsTech technologies to manage their businesses and internal operations more efficiently? What role can automated rights marketplaces (e.g. RightsTrade, AudioSocket, U.K. Copyright Hub) play in simplifying B2B licensing?
  • RightsTech and Direct-to-Consumer Distribution: Many RightsTech startups envision using the technology to enable direct artist-to-consumer distribution models. Can/will technologies like blockchain and smart contracts ever replace the record label or the publisher?
  • RightsTech and Piracy: Could smart contracts, blockchain-enabled codecs and technologies for embedding usage rights and restrictions information directly into digital assets (e.g. RightsML) reduce piracy by making ill-gotten goods unplayable? Could blockchain become the ultimate forensic antipiracy tool?
  • Attribution and Provenance: What role can RightsTech play in assuring appropriate attribution in publishing, graphic arts, photography, etc.?