The Copyright Law of The United States can be complicated, but one part that is easy to interpret deals with music and videos:
In an effort to keep East Ohio Conference United Methodist Churches compliant with copyright law, the conference has entered into an agreement with Christian Copyright Licensing International (CCLI) and with Church Video Licensing International (CVLI). The discounted costs for these two licenses are calculated into each EOC church’s apportionment payment.
Each EOC church has its own, unique CCLI Church Copyright License number. This license gives the church legal authorization to copy from more than 300,000 approved songs for congregational use – including distributing photocopies of lyrics and/or displaying the lyrics on projection screens during services held inside the church building.
NOTE: The CCLI license allows churches to project/distribute lyrics of specific songs.
If you do not know your church’s CCLI number, please contact Brenda Vaccaro via e-mail or at (800) 831-3972 ext. 153.
To comply with the terms of the CCLI agreement, each East Ohio United Methodist Church must display – for each song lyric projected on screen and/or printed in the bulletin – the song title, writer credit(s) and copyright notice. Using 10,000 Reasons as an example, the copyright information should be displayed in the following manner:
Jonas Martin, Matt Redman
© 2011 Said and Done Music
(Administration by EMI Christian Music Publishing)
Used by Permission. CCLI License # ______
The copyright information for a song can be found by:
ALL information listed under Copyrights on the song page must be displayed accordingly:
NOTE: The only songs in The United Methodist Hymnal for which the hymns can be projected/printed without checking the CCLI website are those songs that are copyrighted by The United Methodist Publishing House or by Abingdon Press. The copyright information must still be projected/printed for these songs, as noted above.
Recording/Distributing Copies of Church Services that Include Music
What is needed for congregations to legally record their worship services and distribute copies via tape/CD/DVD for personal use to shut-ins, those in hospitals, etc.:
The conference has one CVLI Church Video License number that is used by all churches.
This license is an agreement with studios and producers that provides legal coverage for license holders to show publicly – within the walls of the church building – motion pictures and other audiovisual programs intended for personal, private use.
To comply with the terms of the CVLI agreement, “No specific titles, or any characters from such titles, or producers’ names will be advertised or publicized to the general public unless authorized by certain producers. No admission or other fee will be charged to the audience.”
This means that churches:
The copyright information for a movie can be found by:
The conference CVLI license includes free access to ScreenVue, where movies, trailers, and thematic clips for sermons/Sunday school classes can be downloaded.
Many churches now post video of their services online. To do this legally churches must purchase a CCLI Streaming and Podcasting License. This license is NOT part of the CCLI license.
The additional license is needed because live streaming and/or podcasting over the internet is recognized as a “broadcast performance.” Because this performance extends beyond the walls of a church building, the religious services performance exemption written into the Copyright Law of The United States does not apply.
The CCLI Streaming and Podcasting License allows churches to legally include copyrighted songs from an approved list of more than 300,000 songs in a webcast or a video posted to the church website, and YouTube and Facebook pages.
The cost of the license is based upon the size of the purchasing church’s membership and is the sole responsibility of the purchasing church.
What is needed, after purchasing the CCLI Streaming and Podcasting License, for congregations to legally record their worship services and post or live-stream them online:
Don't forget about image copyrights. Using a Google image search and downloading the first image you see may not be legal. Make sure you own or have a license to use the image.
These websites offer free, or low cost, downloadable images for use on church websites or in sermon graphics. You’ll also find helpful information in the Breaking the chains of clipart article from United Methodist Communications.
Have a question for the Communications office about your East Ohio Conference church website? Please E-mail it to us and then visit this page often for the answer to your question and to other frequently asked website questions.
The East Ohio Conference Office:
located in North Canton, OH.
near the Akron-Canton airport.
8800 Cleveland Ave. NW ·
North Canton, OH 44720
Toll Free: 800-831-3972
Office Hours: Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
©2016 EAST OHIO CONFERENCE. All Rights Reserved.