I've worked for many years on a cruise ship performing my own songs, and I'd like to know how to claim the royalties. I'm a GEMA member and of course, I have reported to them. they said that sent the claim to SIAE in Italy as the ship's flag is Italian. It has been already 6 years and GEMA seems to know be able to solve it and they told me that they aren't sure how it works with the cruise ship industry. Someone here with the same experience? Thank you
The law on a ship is complicated
- While you were in any inland waterway (i.e. in the harbor), local law applies.
- Similarly, while you were in the territorial waters of a nation (usually 12 nautical miles from the coast but the Mediterranean is complicated), local law applies.
- A nation has jurisdiction in its contiguous zone (12-24 nautical miles, again the Mediterranean is complicated).
- On the high seas, the jurisdiction is the flag of the ship.
You would need to know where the ship was for each of your performances and claim from the copyright royalty organization (through the German one), for each relevant country.
However, your contract with the cruise line may spell out something different.