Your Church Is Not Required To Pay CCLI (Christian Copyright Licensing)
This article, in its initial form, was reviewed and approved by a licensed attorney.
Every attempt has been made to be as fair and balanced as possible, presenting both CCLi's strengths and weaknesses in a completely unbiased manner.
If you believe CCLi's claims that they pay songwriters and publishers to make more good Christian songs, then by all means send CCLi a freewill donation.
However, your performance of music, AND display of lyrics, in your nonprofit worship services is neither a violation of Biblical Law nor of any copyright statutes, nor a failure to love your songwriter-neighbor, therefore your church is under no legal obligation to pay CCLI.
Note: No one, not even CCLI, has ever proven wrong even one single point of this very popular article. All valid objections from CCLi have been promptly addressed with clarifying revisions.
|You are asking:||Answer|
|Is singing a song in church a copyright violation?||NO|
|Can I lawfully use any copyrighted song in church worship, for free?||YES|
|Can I freely and lawfully display the words to any copyrighted song on a projector screen in church?||YES|
|Do I have these rights regardless of what FORM the display takes? That is, in church worship materials, is light from a digital projector legally equal to ink on paper, or acetate film?||YES|
|Are christian songs free to sing?||YES|
|Can I lawfully make any kind of copy of copyrighted works to display to performers and/or the audience in worship and/or in rehearsals for worship?||YES|
|Do I need to get permission, or pay, for any of the above?||NO|
|Can my church be sued for singing other artist's songs?||NO|
|Who is CCLI?||A for-profit collection agency.|
|Is CCLi a scam?||Not unless it answers such questions differently, or in such an evasive, misleading manner that you feel legally obligated to pay for the above uses.|
WHAT IS CCLI?
CCLI is a for-profit commercial collection agency that funds its operations, and the salaries of its scores of employees, by insinuating that churches are 'breaking the law' by doing what's necessary to prepare to sing songs in worship services.
Why don't the government (or the normal Performing Rights Organizations) police church music use?
Because the U.S. Government and the 'usual suspects' like BMI, ASCAP, and SESAC know that the U.S. Code draws a big "Hands Off, money grubbers" sign around ALL church music performance and display of lyrics! Not only would such a claim fail in court, it would be considered contemptuous.
From who should I buy a worship license?
No one. As long as your use meets the simple first-amendment-protected guidelines here, then you don't need a worship-related license from anyone, not WorshipCast, OneLicense, LicenSing, CVLI, CCLI, Music Services, Word of Life, or anyone else.
And if they're honest, the licensing salesmen will admit it.
We hope the above answered your questions about:
- Using modern Christian Music in Church copyright issues
- Christian Copyright Licensing companies
- Christian Music collection agencies
- Christian copyright songs
- Christian music copyright licenses
- Church Licensing copyright
- Church copyright license number (free)
- Church song laws
- Law on violating copyrights on church music
- Using copyrighted music in church services
money-grubbing |ˈməni ˌɡrəbɪŋ|
overeager to make money; grasping