Gesellschaft der Autoren, Komponisten und Musikverleger Austria

Gesellschaft der Autoren, Komponisten und Musikverleger (now AKM) was founded in 1897 and is thus (after the French SACEM) the second oldest collecting society in Europe. She is a member of GESAC, the European umbrella association of copyright societies and the international umbrella organization CISAC.

The history of AKM is closely linked to the development of copyright. The founding efforts began shortly after the Copyright Act was passed in 1895. Some composers, authors and music publishers immediately realized very clearly that the individual enforcement of claims for remuneration for the “concert-like” public performance of their musical works would not be possible for the individual claimant in practice. The constituent general meeting of the cooperative took place on 17-10-1897.

The aim and purpose of the AKM in accordance with its first statute was primarily to safeguard the material interests of its members, ie to ensure that the organizers pay a corresponding performance fee to the company for the use of the protected musical works – according to their use of the works – distributed to its members. The Society also saw it as its mission from the beginning to promote the professional interests of its members and to provide for old-age and survivor care and financial assistance in emergencies.

After its founding, the AKM was at first strongly challenged to provide information to the organizers of musical performances. The number of musical authors and publishers grew steadily and rapidly, and as of July 1, 1901, all well-known and famous composers and lyricists gathered (or their legal successors). What began with 227 members in 1898 is today an association with more than 23,000 members.

In 1898, the first reciprocity agreement was signed with the SACEM. As a result, the organizers in Austria were also granted permission to perform foreign repertoire, while at the same time ensuring that AKM could also pay its members royalties for the performance of their works abroad.

In 1920, Austria acceded to the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works, a wish of the AKM, which it had repeatedly strongly advocated against the Ministry of Justice. Their persistent struggle to extend the term of protection from 30 to 50 years was successful in 1933.

 President of the AKM until 1938:

First members:

See also: Gesellschaft der Autoren, Komponisten und Musikverleger Germany.

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