Publishers’ participation in pay-outs
Here is some news on publisher participation: The amendment to the Act on Collective Management Organisations (VGG / CMO Act) on 24 December 2016 allows GEMA to bring payment dates forward. Furthermore, the Electronic Confirmation Process (ECP, in German EBV) will be available at www.gema.de/ecp from now on. It is the aim of this standardised process to establish the publisher participation for each affected work in a legally compliant manner.
On 24 December 2016, an amendment to the Act on Collective Management Organisations (VGG / CMO Act) in relation to the participation of publishers came into force. It allows GEMA to let authors and publishers jointly participate in exploitation rights again in future, irrespective of the rights flow. This development will have a positive effect on the payment dates 2017 which had already been postponed, as some dates can now be brought forward again:
1. Publisher payments scheduled for 01/01/2017 that had been held back are now going to be released and paid out to publishers on 01/03/2017 - taking any payments on account made in the meantime into consideration.
2. The regular distribution scheduled for 01/04/2017 can now be executed as early as 01/05/2017 for authors and publishers instead of the previously announced date, 01/06/2017.
3. The distribution scheduled for 01/07/2017 for exploitation rights can now be executed on 01/07/2017 instead of the previously announced date, 01/09/2017.
The payment of the statutory remuneration claims dated 01/07/2017 for authors and publishers will take place on 01/09/2017, just as announced in December.
You can access GEMA’s current payment schedule for 2017 here.
Another piece of good news is related to the Electronic Confirmation Process (ECP) with which publisher members can establish their participation for their published repertoire at a share per work level. Based on the amendment to the law, publishers now have time until 01 June 2017 instead of just up to mid-March in order to submit their electronic work lists and the relevant documentation to GEMA.
Please note: Only if publishers submit the relevant declarations via the ECP prior to this deadline, will they be considered for a participation in the payments for the statutory remuneration claims scheduled for 01 September 2017.
You can access an overview of the confirmation process for the ECP here.
Important notice: Avoiding reversals and securing payments in relation to statutory remuneration claims only via ECP in future
In its December meeting, the Supervisory Board had supported that the legal relationships between author and publisher with regards to payments on a share-per-work level should be verified individually, and had thus decided that the ECP should be set up. The ECP will now be launched on 01 February 2017. The ECP will also be necessary in future, after the amendment to the law, as the law does not affect the past. Publishers can only keep their payments received since July 2012 until the amendment to the law entered into force on 24 December 2016 if they have submitted the relevant evidence via the ECP. Furthermore, the express permission of the author for the participation of the publisher must be presented in the ECP in future. GEMA recommends that its members obtain and submit the relevant declarations even for future payments in relation to exploitation rights in order to avoid any residual risks.
GEMA has set up an Electronic Confirmation Process (ECP) for the joint rights administration of authors and publishers which will be available from 01 February 2017 at www.gema.de/ecp. Publisher members can choose this process to provide evidence and confirmations on a share-per-work basis for the repertoire published by them that they have assigned the relevant rights to GEMA themselves, or that a participation has been agreed with the author.
Why is GEMA introducing the Electronic Confirmation Process?
Pursuant to Art. 27a VGG (CMO Act), an express consent of the authors is necessary for a future participation of publishers in the statutory remuneration claims. In order to be able to continue the well-established cooperation between authors and publishers, authors must therefore grant the publishers an express consent and the publishers must submit this confirmation to GEMA.
Following the amendment to the Act on Collective Management Organisations (VGG/CMO Act), GEMA has - since 24 December 2016 - been allowed to participate authors and publishers again in exploitation rights in future just as before - jointly and irrespective of the rightsflow. GEMA does, however, recommend in order to avoid any residual risks, to collect a confirmation declaration nevertheless and to submit it to GEMA via the ECP.
Regarding the past, the legal situation based on the decision of the Higher Regional Court Berlin dated 14 November 2016 continues to be in force. Publishers may therefore only keep their payments received since July 2012 until the amendment to the law entered into force on 24 December 2016 if the author has expressly consented to this in a confirmation declaration.
Who has to execute the Electronic Confirmation Process?
By way of the ECP, GEMA offers its publishers and authors a standardised process which simplifies the confirmation of the publisher participation. Carrying out the ECP is also absolutely essential in order to avoid a reversal or clawback of past pay-outs. By way of using template forms such as the confirmation declaration and the standardised query for mandatory information in the ECP, the forthcoming data volume can be processed better and faster.
With immediate effect, publishers can download electronic work lists at www.gema.de/ecp via the ECP and enter the necessary details on the legal relationships between authors and the publisher. From 01 March 2017 onwards, the completed lists can be submitted to GEMA together with a declaration of indemnification which the publisher will have to issue, and the respective confirmation declarations, via www.gema.de/ecp.
Please note: In order for the pay-out of publisher shares for statutory remuneration claims to be made on 01 September 2017, the electronic work lists as well as the signed declaration of indemnification, together with an indication of the reference number from the ECP, must be uploaded by 01 June 2017 at the latest via www.gema.de/ecp.
In cases where publishers do not have all contact details for the authors that have a relationship with them, GEMA can, in principle, provide the addresses of the respective authors free of charge.
Please create a list with the relevant authors with a publisher (Excel format) including the following details: Name, first name, IPI number, membership number (if both IPI number and membership number are available, the completion of either of the two fields suffices).
Please send this list to GEMA's Member and Partner Services at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please be aware that the following requirements need to be fulfilled:
Data Protection Declaration
Data Protection Declaration (Convenience Translation – German version prevails - Do not sign)
Overview Confirmation Process
Guideline ECP (Download work lists)
Confirmation declaration (original German version)
Confirmation on the joint participation of author and publisher at GEMA (Convenience Translation – German version prevails - Do not sign)
The confirmation declaration can be used in the Electronic Confirmation Process and will be accepted by GEMA. The declaration is based on the current legal situation and is intended to provide a situation where the participation is established in as legally secure terms as possible. If the legal situation should alternate due to legislative changes or new jurisprudence/case law, it may be possible that the declaration will have to be amended. GEMA cannot accept any liability for the effectiveness of the declaration.
The declarations of indemnification can be submitted to GEMA from 01 March 2017 onwards, together with the completed electronic work lists via www.gema.de/ecp. The declaration of indemnification must be signed and include the reference from the EBV. Declarations of indemnification which have been altered will not be accepted.
ECP-Hotline: +49 30 21245-600 (Monday to Friday: between 12.00 and 16.00)