Don't Put Your Eggs in One Basket When It Comes to Copyrights

March 12, 2014by CCS
Don't Put Your Eggs in One Basket When It Comes to CopyrightsWhile companies like CCS strive to make copyright licensing easier and simpler, we still don’t have one music license to cover all the creative ways churches want to use copyrighted material. Unfortunately, it can leave cracks in your copyright coverage if your church puts all their eggs in one basket with only one license. It’s probably one of the most common misunderstandings we encounter when consulting and training with churches. “Oh, we’re covered for that activity, we have the CCLI license,” is a stock response when talking about featuring music in a concert, Easter special event or a fundraiser. In fact, the CCLI church copyright license is a great duplication license for congregational singing, but it does not cover performance rights that allow churches to play or perform music. CCS’s PERFORMmusic License does cover, however, these types of events and activities. Good news for churches: The Religious Services Exemption allows churches to perform and play any type of  music in your worship service, but you need performance licenses for activities outside your service. There are some incredible blanket licenses available to churches, but often times church leaders are not clear on what they DO and DO NOT cover. You can learn more details about available blanket licenses by downloading this free Fact Sheet. For example, the CCLI church copyright license allows churches to make copies of 300,000 Christian songs for congregational singing in several different ways, but it does not cover playing or performing music for special Easter (or other holiday) productions that are ticketed events or not considered a religious service. It also only covers 300,000 Christian songs, so there are some secular compositions that may be featured in an Easter program that would not be covered. Where does that leave church leaders? Some may be confused or frustrated by all the licenses, but when you understand the various blanket licenses available and use them as a mosaic of coverage, just like a blanket, they provide your church with the most comprehensive, simple and cost-effective way to make sure you’re legally using copyrighted material. The right combination of blanket licenses can help churches greatly reduce their risks of copyright infringement, so we recommend that church leaders start out by fully understanding the licenses and obtaining the ones that make sense for their activities. It's often times not an "either or" situation, as most church licenses do not overlap, but together create a mosaic of licensing that provides comprehensive coverage. Another point of confusion we hear quite often is “What is the difference between CCS and CCLI?” Both companies have similar names and both companies were founded to serve the church in the area of copyright licensing.  However, each company primarily addresses a different area of copyright need, offering licensing for specific catalogs or groups of copyrights with different rights. For example, CCLI license primarily addresses the “reproduction rights” for congregational singing of music, and CCS’s licenses primarily address the area of performance rights for playing or performing music. In most cases, the two companies’ licenses do not overlap or address the same rights, song catalogs or activities (with the exception of the streaming licenses).  Read more about the differences between CCS and CCLI. It’s easy to make sure your upcoming Easter programs and ongoing activities are copyright compliant by obtaining one or more of the various blanket licenses available, and in most cases you can secure coverage immediately by signing up. About Christian Copyright Solutions: CCS's quest is to help churches and Christian ministries "do music right."  CCS is an expert on church music copyrights and our primary focus is providing licensing and clear educational resources to churches, as well as representation, administration and advocacy for copyright owners. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook andPinterest.   The information contained herein is for informational purposes only, and is not legal advice or a substitute for legal counsel.    

4 Keys to Helping Your Church Become Copyright Compliant

January 16, 2014by Susan Fontaine Godwin
4 Keys to Helping Your Church Become Copyright CompliantI've never talked with a church or ministry leader who doesn't want to be copyright compliant, but they are often confused about where to start.   Most churches want to do the right thing and honor copyrights, but it can be a very intimidating and scary prospect. When I visit churches and teach about copyright issues, pastors and leaders often say they feel overwhelmed and confused. It's just hard to know where to begin.   Copyright compliance doesn’t happen overnight...it’s a process. That being said, there are certain copyright infringements that represent higher risks and can result in high fines and fees, so it is important to address some critical issues right away. Here are four keys to how you can minimize your risks and P.L.A.N. for compliance:   1) PREPARE - a list of all the areas and types of activities in your church that use copyrighted material; 2) LEARN - the basics of the Copyright Law and blanket licenses that may provide coverage for your activities; 3) ALLOW -  enough time to research and obtain permissions prior to copyright use; 4) NEVER - use copyrighted material without permission or exemption   PREPARE means doing due diligence. You must delve into research and evaluation with your church staff and volunteers to identify where and how copyrighted works are being used in the course of your church’s activities and services. A good place to start is by reviewing your website and focus on any copyrighted materials on the site. Websites may contain several types of copyrights, including music, sound recordings, visual images, literary works and audiovisuals. It’s a good idea to assign a gatekeeper to make sure no uncleared copyrights are posted on your site. Websites make churches more visible, as well as more vulnerable.   LEARN the basics about how the US Copyright Law impacts churches. Download CCS’s Free Fact Sheet on Copyrights 101 to get started.  You may also want to engage a copyright professional or an attorney to advise your church on the important areas that impact your activities. One of the best ways to become copyright compliant is to learn about all the available church blanket licenses, provide churches with the simplest and most cost-efficient method to get copyright coverage. These licenses allow different uses and cover different works. It’s important to understand what the licenses cover and do NOT cover. Down CCS’s Free Fact Sheet on Blanket Licenses.  ALLOW enough time to obtain permission or licenses for the copyrights and uses that are not covered by a blanket license. Permissions can take as long as 4-8 weeks. It helps to incorporate copyright clearances into the creative process when you begin planning for special events. NEVER use copyrighted material with permission or being certain that the use is covered by an exemption in the US Copyright Law; e.g., the Religious Service Exemption. It is best for a church to have include copyright compliance in its policies and procedures document staff members. We’ve always wanted to provide a tool for churches that would help them get a quick read on where they’re doing well and where there are holes in their copyright coverage. With that in mind, we have created a free online interactive tool called the Copyright Compliance Report Card. We thought it would be fun to create a game you can play on your own without fear of judgment or recrimination. The Copyright Compliance Report Card is for entertainment purposes only, but along the way you’ll find some very useful information and practical ideas on how to become more compliant. It will take about 5-10 minutes for you to answer 12 questions. When you’re done, you’ll get a grade and a summary report on specific categories to give you an idea of where you can find licensing solutions or consider making policy changes. Play the game and see how you score. All the information is anonymous and no data is stored in the CCS system and NO, you will not get a call from the Copyright Police! However, if you have questions you can call or live chat with one of our Copyright Solvers (1-555-5SOLVER). About Christian Copyright Solutions: CCS's quest is to help churches and Christian ministries "do music right." CCS is an expert on church music copyrights and our primary focus is providing licensing and clear educational resources to churches, as well as representation, administration and advocacy for copyright owners. Follow us onTwitter, FacebookandPinterest.   The information contained herein is for informational purposes only, and is not legal advice or a substitute for legal counsel.    

ASCAP Celebrates 100 Years Promoting Performance Rights for Songwriters

November 21, 2013by CCS
ASCAP Celebrates 100 Years Promoting Performance Rights for Songwriters    The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) is celebrating “100 Days, 100 Years”  on their website, featuring historical milestones over their 100 year history, and interviews with writers and artists, like Amy Grant. CCS congratulates ASCAP on 100 years of promoting, protecting, collecting and paying royalties for songs on behalf of writers and publishers.   On February 13, 1914, at the Hotel Claridge in New York City, a group of prominent, visionary music creators founded ASCAP. Some of the charter members included composer Victor Herbert, Gustave Kerker, Raymond Hubbell, Harry Tierney, Louis A. Hirsch, Rudolf Friml, Robert Hood Bowers, Silvio Hein, Alfred Baldwin Sloane and Irving Berlin. ASCAP’s first president was George Maxwell.   ASCAP is one of three performance rights organizations (PROs) in the U.S., along with BMI and SESAC. ASCAP has distributed $4.2 billion to its members over the past five years. Revenue distributed by PROs last year to writers and publishers was more than $1.75 billion.   Music performance rights represent a fairly simple concept, but one that is often misunderstood by churches. Myths often spread when there are misunderstandings, so this paper focuses on identifying five common myths in regards to the performance rights for songs and music in the context of church activities.   Performance Rights Basics   Let’s look at some brief definitions to help lay the groundwork for understanding performance licensing. First, the legal definition of a performance is   “...an instance of music being performed “in a place open to the public or at any place where a substantial number of persons outside of a normal circle of a family and its social acquaintances is gathered.”   Most church performances fit those criteria. A performance license grants permission to have these public performances, whether it is a live performance or playing of pre-recorded music.   Performance licenses are controlled and managed by performing rights organizations or “PROs.” The three PROs in the United States are ASCAP, BMI and SESAC. Every songwriter and publisher who wants to be paid performance royalties is registered with one of these three organizations, which represent more than 16 million songs. PROs collect performance license fees for a wide range of uses, from Internet, radio and TV broadcast to stadiums and restaurants.   Churches qualify for an important exemption in the U.S. Copyright Law (section 110[3]), but it is vital that church leaders understand which performances qualify for the exemption and which do not. According to the exemption, the following performances are not infringements of copyright:   “Performance of a nondramatic music work or of a dramatico-music work of a religious nature, or display of a work, in the course of services at a place of worship or other religious assembly.”   Licensing is required, however, when churches perform and play music outside of their religious services, including special holiday programs. Here's a list of some of the activities and events where you may need performance licensing: Christmas caroling Holiday concerts and programs Wedding receptions Fundraisers and social events Youth events Dance/aerobic classes Streaming your services or events online  CCS is honored to partner with ASCAP, BMI and SESAC  to provide one-stop performance licenses for churches and non-profit ministries with our PERFORMmusic License and WORSHIPcast License for internet streaming. Both licenses make copyright coverage simple and affordable for churches and provide a strong revenue source for worship songwriters and publishers.   About Christian Copyright Solutions: CCS's quest is to help churches and Christian ministries "do music right."  CCS is an expert on church music copyrights and our primary focus is providing licensing and clear educational resources to churches, as well as representation, administration and advocacy for copyright owners. Follow us onTwitter, FacebookandPinterest.   The information contained herein is for informational purposes only, and is not legal advice or a substitute for legal counsel. 

Solving 5 Common Myths on Performance Rights & Churches

October 10, 2013by CCS
Solving 5 Common Myths on Performance Rights & ChurchesUnderstanding music performance rights and licensing can be confusing for church leaders who are committed to copyright compliance. It’s especially important during this holiday season, for churches to identify what they need for coverage and make sure the songs they want to perform are licensed.   To help clarify what churches need in the way of licensing, let’s address and solve several myths that are prevalent. You can find more details by downloading our Free Fact Sheet, "6 Myths About Copyrights That Put Your Church at Risk." Here's one myth that comes up quite often: #1 “The religious service exemption allows me to broadcast my church’s performances.” Many church leaders assume that the U.S. Copyright Law religious service exemption allows them to webcast their performances of music, such as the worship team during a service or a special holiday program. This is not true. While the exemption allows churches (and non-profit religious organizations) to play and perform copyrighted music without paying royalties in  their worship service, this exemption does not extend to re-transmission of the service. The religious service exemption of the U.S. Copyright Law (Section 110[3]) states: “performance of a non-dramatic literary or musical work, or of a dramatico-musical work of a religious nature or display of a work, in the course of services at a place of worship or other religious assembly” shall not constitute infringement of copyright. The Congressional history shows that the exemption does “not extend to religious broadcasts or other transmissions to the public at large, even when the transmissions were sent from a place of worship.” If a church is going to have its services on TV or radio, those stations will need to have a performance license. If a church is going to webcast its services, it will need an Internet performance license (often referred to as an Internet streaming license) if it is performing copyrighted songs. CCS's WORSHIPcast one-stop license provides coverage of more than 17 million songs from ASCAP, BMI and SESAC when you stream your performances of music, whether in a worship service or special event. CCS has partnered with ASCAP, BMI and SESAC to simplify the licensing process and provide the one-stop Internet performance license. Annual fees start as low as $225. #2 “Churches are exempt from performance licensing.” Another common misunderstanding of the copyright exemption is when churches believe that the exemption applies to all of their use of copyrighted music, regardless of the context. This is not the case. The religious service exemption applies only to actual religious services. All other performances require a performance license, as stated below:   “…in the course of services at a place of worship or other religious assembly.” Outside of religious services, churches have the same copyright responsibilities as a restaurant, business or stadium. Myth #3: “I need a performance license to play secular music in service.” Due to the religious service exemption, churches do not need a performance license to play or perform secular music in worship services. In fact, churches do not need a performance license to play any kind of music, whether it’s live or pre-recorded, so long as it is during a religious or worship service. Much of the confusion stems from a misunderstanding of exemption. The religious service exemption applies both to live performances of music as well as the playing of pre-recorded music. The exemption applies to all music, Christian and secular. The only exception in the exemption is “dramatico-musical” works of a nonreligious nature, such as secular operas or plays. These are not exempt and would require licensing.  If a church plays or performs Christian and/or secular music outside their religious service, then a performance license is required from ASCAP, BMI and SESAC, or you can obtain the one-stop PERFORMmuisc License, which includes more than 17 million songs included in the repertoires of ASCAP, BMI and SESAC.   Myth #4: All the songs we perform or play are covered by our CCLI License.   In fact, the CCLI church copyright license does not cover performance rights, but only the right to duplicate or reproduce about 300,000 Christian songs used in congregational singing. CCS’s PERFORMmusic License does cover these types of events and activities and allows your church to play or perform more than 17 million Christian and secular (including holiday) songs.   Myth #5: “My church does not perform music outside of services.”   When church leaders realize the religious service exemption does not apply to music performed outside of services, often the immediate response is, “We don’t play any music outside of services.”   This is very rarely the case. After some quick reflection, most churches recognize that they are playing lots of music outside of their worship services, including:   Christmas programs Christmas caroling Singing Christmas Trees Harvest events Thanksgiving programs Coffee shops Bookstores Concerts Carnivals & festivals Dance & exercise classes Conferences & seminars Youth group gatherings Wedding receptions On-hold music   Each church should review its music uses to determine if it needs a performance license. Most will find that they do. CCS’s one-stop PERFORMmusic License covers more than 17 million songs for all of these types of activities outside worship services, and annual fees start as low as $199. About Christian Copyright Solutions: CCS's quest is to help churches and Christian ministries "do music right."  CCS is an expert on church music copyrights and our primary focus is providing licensing and clear educational resources to churches, as well as representation, administration and advocacy for copyright owners. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest. The information contained herein is for informational purposes only, and is not legal advice or a substitute for legal counsel.  

CCS Streaming License 2.0: Costs Down, Value Up & Easier Reporting

October 02, 2013by CCS
CCS Streaming License 2.0: Costs Down, Value Up & Easier ReportingGas, utilities, food...it seems like costs are always going up. Just once, wouldn’t it be nice to hear that your rates were going down? CCS is happy to bring churches and ministries some good news with the launch of WORSHIPcast License v. 2.0 and lower license fees.       Starting as low as $225, annual fees are going down for churches with average weekly attendance under 2,000 beginning October 1.     Through CCS’s partnership with ASCAP, BMI and SESAC (U.S. performance rights organizations), the upgraded WORSHIPcast License features lower rates, more value and simpler online music reporting. Since 2006, thousands of churches and ministries have utilized WORSHIPcast, the only one-stop church streaming performance license that covers 17 million Christian and secular songs. “We’ve been listening to our customers who have asked for lower fees and easier reporting,” explains CCS President/Founder Susan Fontaine Godwin. “We’re thrilled that our PRO partners (ASCAP, BMI and SESAC) have worked very hard with us to improve WORSHIPcast and make it more accessible and affordable to smaller churches, while simplifying reporting for all licensees.” Annual fees are now based on the average weekly attendance or members for churches and ministries.  Avg. Attendance Annual Fee     1-199 $225 200-499 $350 500-1,999 $695 2,000-5,999 $925 6,000-14,999 $1,250 15,000+ $1,750 Churches with more than 5,999 attendance will now get three websites, or URLs, covered by their one license. Fees are higher, but the additional URL coverage represents potential savings of $1,050-1,525 in annual fees. In addition, licensees with 1-5,999 members are allowed to earn up to annual revenue of $13,000 derived from music on their websites with unique visitors of up to 480,000. Licensees with members more than 6,000 can earn up $20,000 per year and have up to 700,000 unique site visitors. The online music use reporting requirements have also been greatly simplified, and licensees can easily download their set list of songs into their CCS online account on a weekly basis, recording the number of times the songs have been performed. All licensees must report music use, assuring that your favorite songwriters and publishers will receive increased revenue.   There are two music licensing solutions for churches that want to legally stream their music online. CCLI has a streaming license, as an add-on to their basic church copyright license. We have received many questions about how this license compares to WORSHIPcast church streaming license. Let's take a look.   CATALOG First, let’s evaluate song catalogs covered by the respective licenses. CCLI's license is based on their catalog of 300,000 Christian songs.  The WORSHIPcast license covers more than 17 million Christian, holiday and secular songs from ASCAP, BMI and SESAC, including all the songs in the CCLI programs. What is the impact of the catalog size? Well, if the song that you want to use is not in the catalog, you can't webcast it without getting additional licensing from the song's owner. Getting this additional permission can take weeks and would cost additional money. Scrimping on catalog size will save some money upfront, but it will also limit what songs you can include in your webcast or require you to spend additional time and money to use songs that are not in the catalog. The WORSHIPcast catalog is 80 times the size of the CCLI catalog, which is also limited only to Christian music. PRICE Second, let's look at price.  The WORSHIPcast license fees start at $225 with six tier prices based on average weekly attendance,. The CCLI license has far more tiers and starts at $50 for churches with congregations of less than 25 and goes up to  $750. For most churches, the price difference will be a few hundred dollars. Keep in mind that incremental licensing costs for any songs that you use outside of the CCLI catalog would quickly eat up those savings. USESThe two licenses also differ in the scope of what they allow the licensee to do. The CCLI license allows podcasting and streaming, but is limited only to worship services. The WORSHIPcast doesn’t allow podcasting but covers any of your performances you want to stream, including concerts and produced videos. The CCLI license does not allow you to derive any income from the music you stream, and the WORSHIPcast License allows between $13,000-20,000 in annual revenue for non-commercial purposes.   About Christian Copyright Solutions: CCS's quest is to help churches and Christian ministries "do music right."  CCS is an expert on church music copyrights and our primary focus is providing licensing and clear educational resources to churches, as well as representation, administration and advocacy for copyright owners. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest. The information contained herein is for informational purposes only, and is not legal advice or a substitute for legal counsel.  

Easy Music Licensing for Church Fall Programs

September 27, 2013by CCS
Easy Music Licensing for Church Fall Programs Hayrides, bonfires, corn mazes, pumpkin painting - fall is in the air! Is your church ready for worship around the fire, in the barn, or harvest parties? Worship and singing happens in the most unlikely of places. Make sure your church has music licensing covered so that all you need to worry about is making the S'mores. Special fall church programs can  often slide under the radar when it comes to licensing for music. There are a couple factors to consider:   1) Special events like fall programs and events are not considered a religious service and therefore do not qualify under the U.S. Religious Service Exemption. 2) Music for autumn celebrations often include secular, or non-Christian songs that are not covered by some blanket licenses, such as CCLI.  There’s an easy, simple and affordable solution with CCS’s PERFORMmusic License that gives you comprehensive and immediate coverage for 17 million songs. Let's look at the question of the U.S. Religious Service Exemption The U.S. Religious Service Exemption allows you to freely perform or play music in your worship service. But did you know that many churches and ministries are at risk and out of compliance for performing or playing music in a non-exempt setting? In most cases, using copyrighted songs outside of religious services, requires performance licensing.   Confusion often lies in the way we think of performances. Many times, we think of them as formal presentations of some variety…a soloist, ensemble or choir. However, the performance licensing requirement is not limited to these situations. When congregations and smaller informal groups play or perform copyrighted music outside of a worship setting, they also require performance licensing, whether music is played by a professional string quartet or sung by an informal group full of amateur musicians. DO YOU COVER THE SAME SONGS AS CCLI? Yes, CCS's WORSHIPcast and PERFORMmusic Licenses include all of the 300,000 songs in CCLI's catalog, plus an additional 17 million from ASCAP, BMI and SESAC. How does that work? Any songwriter or publisher who wants their songs to be eligible to collect performance royalties will register with one of the three PROs (performance rights organization), which are ASCAP, BMI and SESAC. If they are Christian songwriters and publishers, they may still include their songs in the CCLI program. What does that mean for churches? If you want to make sure you have comprehensive performance rights coverage for Christian, holiday, patriotic and secular music, the WORSHIPcast and PERFORMmusic licenses cover pretty much any song you may want to perform. About Christian Copyright Solutions: CCS's quest is to help churches and Christian ministries "do music right."  CCS is an expert on church music copyrights and our primary focus is providing licensing and clear educational resources to churches, as well as representation, administration and advocacy for copyright owners. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest. The information contained herein is for informational purposes only, and is not legal advice or a substitute for legal counsel.  

Performance Rights Licenses: What Churches & Camps Should Know

June 04, 2013by CCS
Performance Rights Licenses: What Churches & Camps Should KnowMusic is a vital part of many summer activities for churches and camps. Music performance rights are quite often overlooked during summer events, but they are an important building block in any church, ministry or camp’s copyright compliance plan; however, they are sometimes confusing and frequently misunderstood.  The U.S. Copyright Laws regarding performing are quite clear, and it is actually very simple and inexpensive for churches, camps and ministries to address their performance licensing obligations. As one of six exclusive rights of copyright owners, performance rights represent a fairly simple concept, but one that churches often misunderstand. Myths often spread when there are misunderstandings, so let’s establish some basic understanding about how performance rights impact church activities. Here are some brief definitions to help lay the groundwork for understanding. First, the legal definition of a performance is: an instance of music being performed  “in a place open to the public or at any place where a substantial number of persons outside of a normal circle of a family and its social acquaintances is gathered.” Most church and camp performances fit those criteria. A performance license grants permission to play or perform music these public settings, whether it is a live performance or playing of music from a recording. Performance licenses are controlled and managed by performing rights organizations (PROs); and the three U.S.. PROs are ASCAP, BMI and SESAC. Every songwriter and publisher who wants to be paid performance royalties is registered with at least one of these three organizations, which represent more than 16 million songs. PROs collect performance license fees for a wide range of uses, from Internet, radio and TV broadcast to stadiums, stores, bowling alleys, restaurants, and other facilities like churches. Churches qualify for an important exemption in the U.S. Copyright Law (section 110[3]), but it is vital that church leaders understand which performances qualify for the exemption and which do not. According to the exemption, the following performances are not infringements of copyright: “Performance of a nondramatic music work or of a dramatico-music work of a religious nature, or display of a work, in the course of services at a place of  worship or other religious assembly.” It is important to note that this exemption specifically applies to performances that take place during a worship service at a place of worship, it DOES NOT exempt churches or camps from the requirement for performance licensing outside of services. There are three ways to obtain performance licensing for your church. 1.  You can contact each individual copyright holder and/or publisher directly to obtain permission and pay royalties for each song use. 2. You can go to each individual Performance Rights Organizations (PROs) and get an annual license from each one (ASCAP, BMI and SESAC), sign three agreements, pay three fees and submit three reports. All three PROs have partnered with CCS to provide a simple one-stop performance license for churches and ministries.  3.  You can purchase CCS's PERFORMmusic Blanket License. With one annual fee, this licenses covers churches for over 16 million Christian, secular, seasonal and patriotic songs in the catalogs of ASCAP, BMI and SESAC for an entire year. Fees start at $199 annual and there is no reporting is required. This is the only church and ministry performance blanket performance license available in the U.S. About Christian Copyright Solutions: CCS's quest is to help churches and Christian ministries "do music right."  CCS is an expert on church music copyrights and our primary focus is providing licensing and clear educational resources to churches, as well as representation, administration and advocacy for copyright owners. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest.        

Performance Rights License Myth on Religious Service Exemption

April 30, 2013by CCS
Performance Rights License Myth on Religious Service ExemptionThere are many myths regarding the Religious Service Exemption and performance rights. Most worship leaders and pastors want to honor copyrights and do the right thing, but it can often be confusing and overwhelming trying to understand what licenses they need for copyright compliance. Where there is confusion myths abound, and there are a lot of myths surrounding copyrighted material and its use in the church, especially when it comes to performance rights.   Many church leaders are under the assumption that the Religious Service Exemption in U.S. Copyright Law (Section 110 [3]) allows them to webcast their performances of music, such as the worship team during a service. This is false. While the Religious Service Exemption allows you to play and perform copyrighted music without paying royalties in your worship service, this exemption does not extend to re-transmission of the service. This was a real grey area until 2006, when a publisher named Simpleville took a radio station to court for rebroadcasting several churchs' services, including the music portion. The defendant's arguments against liability was that he could broadcast the songs because the songs had been performed during church services. The court rejected the argument, stating that the exemption applies only to performances that occur at the place of worship; it does not extend to broadcasts of those performances. To learn more about performance rights myths you can download the CCS Fact Sheet. The Congressional history shows  that the exemption does "not extend to religious broadcasts or other transmissions to the public at large, even when the transmissions were sent from a place of worship." If you are going to have your services on TV or radio, those stations will need to have a performance license. This ruling also applies to streaming or broadcasting your services on the Internet. We frequently get requests from churches for these license, but the licensing agencies want to deal directly with the radio and TV stations. CCS can help you if you want to broadcast or stream your services on the Internet. CCS's WORSHIPcast license allows you to stream your performances of over 16 million Christian and secular songs from ASCAP, BMI and SESAC.  About Christian Copyright Solutions: CCS's quest is to help churches and Christian ministries "do music right."  CCS is an expert on church music copyrights and our primary focus is providing licensing and clear educational resources to churches, as well as representation, administration and advocacy for copyright owners. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest.   

Copyright Licensing Quiz for Summer VBS, Camps and Events

April 04, 2013by CCS
Copyright Licensing Quiz for Summer VBS, Camps and EventsWe hope your Easter celebration was filled with joy, peace and hope! Now it’s time to catch your breath and chill out, right? But for many church leaders, it’s only a short break with graduation, VBS and summer programs just around the corner. There are many copyright questions when it comes to youth events, graduation and camp programs, so here’s a brief quiz to test your knowledge.  My church needs a performance license in order to play music for our VBS programs? True or False? TRUE. When you play recorded music or perform songs outside of a religious service, your church needs a performance license from the song copyright owners, or with the performance rights organizations, ASCAP, BMI and SESAC. Your church VBS program does NOT qualify under the Religious Service exemption (U.S. Copyright Law (Section 110[3])as a religious service, which covers “during the course of services at a place of worship or other religious assembly.” CCS’s PERFORMmusic License provides easy, immediate and cost effective performance blanket coverage for 16 million songs (Christian and secular) from ASCAP, BMI and SESAC.Our church summer camp programs need a performance license to cover playing music or performing songs during any camp activity or event. True or False? TRUE: Camp programs often feature playing recorded music at various events and activities, as well as performing music at sing-alongs, concerts and during worship. These public performances and uses require performance licensing, and can be secured from individual song owners, or ASCAP, BMI and SESAC, or CCS’s PERFORMmusic License. If we make a memory video of a youth event or mission trip, we need a synchronization license to feature a song or background music with the video. True or False? TRUE: You need a synchronization (sync) license to legally reproduce a copyrighted song in timed relation with visual images; e.g., motion pictures, video, promo audiovisuals, etc.  Requests for sync licenses can be denied by the publisher, so it’s important to obtain a license prior to producing the video. In addition, publishers can set any rate they want for these licenses. If you also reproduce a third party’s recording of the song, you will also need to get a master sync license from the owner of the recording, which is a separate copyright from the musical composition. CCS’s PERMISSIONSplus service can secure sync and master licenses for videos and pay royalties on your behalf. About Christian Copyright Solutions: CCS's quest is to help churches and Christian ministries "do music right."  CCS is an expert on church music copyrights and our primary focus is providing licensing and clear educational resources to churches, as well as representation, administration and advocacy for copyright owners. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest.    

Disclaimer
The information contained herein is for informational purposes only, and is not legal advice or a substitute for legal counsel.