If there was one thing that the delegates at Screen's Maximising Digital Revenue conference agreed on, it's that nobody really knows what will happen next with digital rights.

The conference brought together key producers, distributors, sales agents and lawyers to discuss how the film industry could move forward to create revenue from the new distribution channels being opened up by digital platforms.

The day's presentations and panels covered a broad range of relevant topics from DRM systems to lessons to be learned from the music industry.

At the beginning of the day, Ian Lewis, director at BSkyB, challenged industry players to be bold. 'There will be those who sit on their hands and wait to see what's going to happen,' he said, 'and there will those change makers who lay the new foundations and create the rules of engagement.'

The need to develop new business models to deal with digital distribution was universally acknowledged. But exactly where digital rights fit into the current picture and how those models will develop were questions that remained unanswered.

Over the course of day, it became clear that many felt that the 'wait and see' approach to digital rights was less of an abdication of responsibility and more of a pragmatic recognition of the complex and unknowable factors at play.

This was reinforced during the final panel session when the speakers discussed structuring rights deals in a digital age.

'In the end it will come down to the market place,' said Justin Marciano, managing director of UK/US distributor Revolver Entertainment.

And that general level of caution was reinforced by Kate Leece, head of legal and business affairs, Future Media and Technology at the BBC. 'It's not clear yet which business models will work best for everyone and the consumer may outstep us,' she said. 'It's not easy to know which way they will move.'

Meanwhile, James Kay, partner at leading European law firm Olswang, pointed out that the evolving digital consumer would remain key to the digital future. 'It will be a few years and it will be the public who decides. In the meantime, models will continue to move,' Kay said.

For Arvind David, producer and CEO at all-digital ministudio Slingshot Studios, the central question was less about which models could maximise revenue from digital rights, but rather more about agreeing what those rights were worth.

'The question is, does the collective value of new digital forms of viewing content make up for or exceed the analogue value lost'' David asked.

What did emerge clearly from the discussions were the conflicting priorities of the players buying and selling content rights.

From Kate Leece's point of view at the BBC, the answer is simpler. 'We have a duty to the licence payer to put content out on the best means possible,' she said. 'We are looking at the whole and will get as much as possible in the deal.'

But Olswang's Kay is already looking forward to wrangling over the new channels. 'Until you pay me for it, the (digital) rights are non-exclusive,' he offered.

The conference may have ended without coming up with all the answers, but it did succeed in highlighting the issues.

And there was certainly no argument that an industry as creative as this could fail to come up with the answers.

Indeed, the challenge was laid out by Slingshot's Arvind David. 'I say to the people in this room, let's innovate together - not out of fear, but because its fun,' he said. 'So much of the UK industry is like rabbits caught in the headlights. There is stuff to play for rather than worrying about getting one percent more on an online deal.'