GEMA strikes agreement with German clubs

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  • Though details are still scarce, early indications are that the deal will see a "moderate" increase in fees paid to artists for music played in clubs.
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  • An agreement has been struck between GEMA and German clubs over its controversial fee system. Though full details are yet to be revealed, it is believed GEMA have agreed on a fee that is lower than the one they proposed in 2012, which drew a fierce backlash from Berlin's electronic music community. As Der Spiegel report, the agreement was reached last week. Speaking with Der Spiegel, Ernst Fischer, who heads the German Association Of Music Event Organizers, said the deal would see a "moderate" increase in fees paid by clubs (GEMA's original demands would have seen a reported 1,400% increase for some venues). Der Spiegel's article states that the long-term increases for clubs will amount to somewhere between 29% and 64%, though in the short term they will be lower than that. The new fees will come into place on January 1st, 2014. The GEMA issue has cast a cloud over the German club scene in recent times—as recently as August 2012 there were genuine fears that some of the country's most prominent clubs would have to close as a result of GEMA's demands, leading to protests in cities across Germany and a petition with 300,000 signatures. For an in-depth look at the GEMA issue and its history, read Luis Manuel Garcia's piece for RA published back in April.