Church Copyright Q&A

Here at CCS we strive to make understanding copyright compliance easier. With that in mind, we are tackling a few more frequently asked questions from both current and potential clients. We always welcome your feedback and encourage you to comment below if you have any questions we haven’t covered.

What do we do about using videos on our website? Does CCS do that?

If you want to post or stream third party videos (videos created and owned by someone other than you), then you will need to obtain permission from the video owner. There is currently no blanket license that covers the right to post or stream videos. There are a couple of film and video licensing companies that license the right to perform or show films and videos but only for the live showing or performing in your facilities. You can get a license for individual films/videos from Criterion Pictures, MPLC and CVLI.

Does having a CCS license cover playing Spotify in our church facilities?

The CCS PERFORMmusic Facilities License allows you to play music anywhere in your facilities or on your campus. It includes all of the music in the catalogs of ASCAP, BMI, and SESAC (more than 20 million songs). The right to play music includes playing in public pre-recorded music, whether it is from a CD, digital recording or streaming music service, like Spotify. It’s a good idea to refer to the terms and conditions of any music service you use to find out what their rights and limitations include.

What songs are covered with the CCS WORSHIPcast license?

The WORSHIPcast Streaming License allows you to stream your performances of over 20 million Christian and secular songs from the combined catalogs of ASCAP, BMI, and SESAC. All genres are covered, from Contemporary Christian and Gospel to Rock, Country, Holiday, Patriotic, Pop, Children’s music and much more. To view the songs covered, simply visit each Performance Rights Organization’s Repertory page (links above) and search their catalogs.

What can I do with PERFORMmusic?

The PERFORMmusic Facilities License covers a wide range of performances of live and pre-recorded music outside of religious services allowing you to play and perform music without worry. Below is a list of all the ways you can use your PERFORMmusic license:

  • Coffee shops
  • Bookstore concerts (non-ticketed)
  • Retreats
  • Picnics & Barbecues
  • Singles groups
  • Dances
  • Carnivals & Festivals
  • Graduations
  • Award ceremonies
  • Testimonials & Retirements
  • Dance classes
  • Exercise classes
  • Karaoke
  • Conferences & Seminars
  • Vacation Bible School
  • Camps
  • Sporting events
  • Movie nights
  • Pageants
  • Youth group gatherings
  • Guest speakers
  • Wedding receptions
  • On-hold music
  • Music before & after service
  • Community events
  • Retirement home visits
  • Day Care

Susan Fontaine Godwin is CCS’s Founder/CVO, an educator and long-time member of the Christian arts community with 32 years of experience in the Christian media industry, church copyright administration and copyright management. Susan is an author and speaker and frequently writes for several Christian magazines and online publications. She serves as an adjunct professor at the University of Mobile.

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

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