On Monday (November 14), a Berlin court ruled that collection society GEMA can no longer distribute a share of authors’ royalties to its music publishers.
Furthermore the court ruled that publishers should return payments made since 2010.
As you can imagine, this has not gone down well with rights-holders.
“This would result in the devastation of the German music industry, and yet another example of attempts to legislate and regulate our industry that end up annihilating the long standing work of the music publishing community,” said Budde Music founder and VP of the IMPF (Independent Music Publishers Forum) Prof. Dr. Rolf Budde.
“The implications of this latest ruling are far ranging and shocking.
“The system of partnership between authors and publishers in GEMA is a constant for decades in Germany and therefore this decision is both wrong and damaging.”
The starting point for the court’s decision was the action of two songwriters and GEMA members – Bruno Kramm and Stefan Ackermann.