Code of Practice
This Code of Practice forms an integral part of the conditions for membership of the Association of German-speaking Opera and Concert Agencies (DOKA). All members agree to abide by this Code and to recognise the objectives of the Association.
When entering into representation of an artist, the agency is under a duty to confirm their agreement in writing, either in a formal contract or in letter form. The agreement shall be fair and reasonable and shall specify the following:
- the amount of any commission to be paid to the agency,
- the agency’s right to commission upon the termination of the agreement,
- the commissionable activities,
- any expenses to be reclaimed by the agency from the artist,
- the applicable territory,
- any exclusivity,
- the duration of the contract
- the procedure for terminating the contract.
The agency shall inform their artist that the agency is a member of “DOKA”. The present Code of Practice shall be made available to the artist.
An agency shall not state that they act on behalf of an artist without the artist’s prior approval. If there is a general management, they must give their written approval.
When an agency is in receipt of money on behalf of an artist, such money should always be properly accounted for and held and distributed in accordance with the governing laws of the country in which the agency is based, unless mutually agreed otherwise in writing.
An agency that is acting as a general management shall not replace a local management without the prior approval of the artist.
When promoting their services, agencies will at all times, maintain the highest ethical standards and will not pressurise or otherwise incriminate artists. An agent will not make disparaging remarks about another agency or a third party to an artist.
An agent will not directly contact an artist represented by another agency but will always make an enquiry through the agency representing the artist.
If an artist decides to change agencies, the “new” agency shall use its best endeavours to ensure that the artist honours all reasonable contractual obligations entered into with the outgoing agency. The new agency must not knowingly encourage the artist to break existing agreements, which should only be altered by negotiation and if there is an agreement between the parties. Existing agreements shall only be amended by negotiation and by mutual agreement between the parties.
Even under difficult circumstances, all parties involved in such negotiations shall make every effort to communicate with each other respectfully.
Agents must ensure that, in situations with potential conflicts of interest, they draw attention to them and behave ethically correct. This applies to situations where agents work, for example, as promoters, programming/casting consultants or as jurors in competitions, and where this would influence their activities as agents or their loyalty towards their artists.
Any split of the commission between agents should be agreed upon in writing by all parties involved in advance.
When an agency has been asked for information about an artist whom he/she does not represent, he/she will give the name and details of the agency representing such artist or advice on where to find the relevant information.
It is the responsibility of the agent to ensure that he/she maintains a high level of professional competence and endeavours to have a full understanding of all relevant legislation.
Any complaint made against a member of the Association in relation to a breach of this Code shall be dealt with by the Board in accordance with the current procedure at that time, a copy of which is available to members upon request.
Equal opportunity and non-discrimination
All members undertake to ensure that no one is discriminated based on colour, religion (creed), gender, gender expression, sexual orientation, age, national origin (ancestry), mental or physical limitations/disability, marital or military status.