This is how we are organised
GEMA is an umbrella organisation where composers and lyricists as creators of musical works as well as music publishers have joined forces. As a collective management organisation, GEMA represents entitlements and rights of its members for payment of royalties as soon as their musical works protected by copyright are used at a global level. At the same time, it supports various promotion projects for a diverse music culture. In the interest of its members, it campaigns in the political arena for a forward-looking and sustainable understanding of copyright and contributes to sharpening the awareness for the value of creative performances within society. It is not just the more than 90,000 GEMA members who benefit from such activities but nearly two million rightsholders from all over the world who GEMA represents on the basis of representation agreements with collective management organisations from other countries.
The central bodies and committees of the association
GEMA “is” its 90,000 members
The central body of GEMA is its annual General Assembly. About 5,000 full GEMA members who devote themselves to music full-time are entitled to participate and make decisions. Plus 64 delegates who are elected by the currently 85,000 associate GEMA members and bring in their interests. The General Assembly passes resolutions on current decisions and future developments of GEMA. It also determines the distribution plan for the licensing income of music creators and publishers. Other tasks include to elect the GEMA Supervisory Board from among its members.
The Supervisory Board is composed exclusively of members from the three professional categories composers, lyricists and publishers. The GEMA Statutes determine that six composers, five publishers and four lyricists make up the Supervisory Board. Each professional category also appoints two representatives. The Supervisory Board accompanies the work of the Managing Committee and decides on important developments and measures of the GEMA business policy.
The Managing Committee of GEMA is responsible or the operational business and thus the economic development of GEMA. It is obliged to present the Supervisory Board and the General Assembly with an annual Transparency Report report.
Various committees and their actively involved members and committee representatives drive internal issues forward and advance legal and market-oriented topics and activities of GEMA.
ICE: International Copyright Enterprise
ICE was founded in 2015 as a joint venture licensing and processing service of the three collective management organisations GEMA (Germany), PRS for Music (UK) and STIM (Sweden). The Joint Venture hosts the documentation of copyright, the licensing of digital music providers and the processing of digital usage reports under its umbrella. With this integrated licensing and processing hub, GEMA, PRS for Music and STIM facilitate the handling of an ever-increasing data volume which are the result of a large number of individual music uses via digital music services.
GEMA has founded or acquired various subsidiaries which offer special services in the rights management sector. They include ARESA (Anglo-American Rights European Service Agency), iSYS Software GmbH, IT4IPM IT for Intellectual Property Management, SOLAR Music Rights Management Ltd, ZPÜ (Central Organisation for Private Copying Rights) and deecoob.
As one of the largest authors’ societies for musical works in the world, GEMA is also involved at international level to protect and progress copyright. It is thus a member of GESAC (European Grouping of Societies of Authors and Composers) and CISAC (International Confederation of Societies of Authors and Composers), an international umbrella organisations of copyright societies in 108 countries. Furthermore, it is actively involved in BIEM (Bureau International des Sociétés gérant les Droits d'Enregistrement et de Reproduction Mécanique) and Fast Track (The Digital Copyright Network).
GEMA is subject to state supervision which is carried out by the German Trademark and Patent Office (DPMA). The legal framework for the supervisory activities is set by the VGG, the Collecting Societies' Act [also CMO Act) . The Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection (BMJV) is responsible for shaping the legal framework for GEMA and its state supervision.
The main office locations of GEMA are in Munich and Berlin. Dresden and Berlin offices house our customer centre. Additional offices are located in Berlin, Hamburg, Stuttgart, Nuremberg and Wiesbaden. ICE, the joint venture with the collective management organisations PRS (UK) and STIM (Sweden), is run from London and Berlin.
Our political liaison office
GEMA runs political liaison offices in Berlin and Brussels. GEMA’s Political Communications Division is responsible for the important collaboration with the decision makers in German and European Union politics.
Our team acts as a point of contact for politicians as well as for partners from the politico-cultural sector - and answers their questions on GEMA’s duties, function, distribution method and strategic focus
In the GEMA whistleblower portal, employees, members, customers and business partners can, confidentially and, if they wish, anonymously, submit information on possible compliance violations, in particular on violations of applicable criminal standards as well as serious misconduct.
Further information is provided on the entry page of the whistleblower system.