GEMA stands for Gesellschaft für musikalische Aufführungs- und mechanische Vervielfältigungsrechte.

The GEMA is responsible for managing the rights of composers, songwriters and music publishers.  As such, it is responsible for collecting the royalties from users of music and re-distributing them to its members, similar to the Performing Right Society (PRS) in the UK.

Using music that is GEMA-registered, eg. at an event or on a website, requires the usage to be registered and paid for.  This is usually straight forward for “traditional” events, however some circumstances are more complicated, as we found out last year in the Monday Podcast.

To hear a simple explanation and a short discussion in German, listen to the podcast:

(Press the “play” button to listen to the podcast)

Download the MP3 file | Subscribe to the podcast


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About Graham

Graham Tappenden is a British ex-pat who first came to Germany as a placement student in 1993, returning in 1995 to live there permanently. He has been writing for since 2006. When not writing blog posts or freelancing for the Oberurseler Woche and other publications he works as a self-employed IT consultant solving computer problems and designing websites. In 2016 he gained German citizenship.

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