GEMA at a glance

85,000* members

A lot of creative heads are joined in GEMA. They compose music or write lyrics. Sometimes they do both. Add to that the people who publish music. Without these people, our world would be much poorer. And without GEMA, they would probably be poorer, too. As a strong creative community, they can exercise their rights for a fair payment whenever their works are used in public.

75,500 composers and lyricists

5,000 music publishers

4,500 legal successors

*As of December 2021. All numbers are rounded.

GEMA – how it all began...
The origin of copyright

Imagine the following: It is the middle of the 19th century. You are a composer of chansons and are sitting in a café in Paris. Suddenly music is played which you know all too well - no wonder, it is music that you created! The atmosphere is rising, the guests are exuberant, and the money is rolling into the cash register of the café owner. And you? You only end up with a bill for your lemonade. In such a situation, would you not also say: "Hold on a minute..."


To do this, they gather once a year for their Members' Assembly. There, the members discuss and decide on current issues. At the same time, they also vote on how GEMA is supposed to look like in future.

Very important: The Members' Assembly determines the Distribution Plan.  This plan governs how exactly the licensing income is distributed to the music authors and publishers. Finally, the Members’ Assembly also elects the members of the GEMA Supervisory Board.

All GEMA members are represented in the General Assembly: Full members are entitled to vote directly, while associate members are represented by elected delegates. We compiled detailed information on associate and full members for you in our information leaflet GEMA membership categories.

For a colourful music landscape. With many voices.

Because we love music, we support music creators and grant prizes so that our musical life remains full of so many facets and can develop further in future.


Clear the stage for creators! The German Music Authors' Prize.

They are the ones who are never in the spotlight:
The creative heads, or rather the music authors.
Without them, it would not be possible to ever perform music and bring it onto a stage. It is them who gift gripping melodies, new sounds and touching words to the world. And that is exactly why we provide these people with a stage – and bow to them with the German Music Authors' Prize.

Excellent words. The Fred Jay Award.

What do Mark Forster, Inga Humpe and Die Fantastischen Vier have in common? They all live their passion for music with German lyrics and each of them is a recipient of the Fred Jay Award.

This award, named after the lyricist Fred Jay, is granted each year to people who have contributed a lot to our German-language music culture with their lyrics.  We at GEMA are proud that we are the patron of this great prize.

Music is here for everybody. The Radio Culture Award.

Despite Facebook, Twitter & Co., it still is the medium with the biggest number of users worldwide: the radio.

Because it takes music, art and culture exactly where its listeners are in that very moment. Without radio, many of those people would be mostly isolated. We therefore highlight its significance for the cultural diversity with the Radio Culture Award.

How we are organised

As an organisation where so many threads converge, we must of course be set up accordingly. Important tasks are taken on by Supervisory Board, Managing Committee and the Delegates.

We make ourselves heard

Our subsidiaries

In order to be able to position ourselves more broadly and offer our services more efficiently, we at GEMA have founded several subsidiaries over the years. Would you like to find out more about ARESA, ISYS, IT4IPM, SOLAR, ZPÜ?

To the subsidiaries

Part of international associations

We also work on a multi-country level to guarantee a protection of authors for you.

To the memberships

Music and politics

Since we give creatives a voice, we also get politically involved.

Our political liaison office