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What you can do, what you can’t do and why
it matters
© Copyright
is held by the creator/owner of any
created work and only they have the exclusive
rights to use it.
© Using copyrighted works without permission
is illegal.
© The Bible shows clearly that God values
honesty, integrity, generosity and respect for
the property of others (which includes
creative/intellectual property and royalties).
A created work may appear in different forms
and be used in different ways.
E.g. a song may be owned by its composer, who
has exclusive rights to perform it. But a
recording of that song also involves the rights
of the performers and the owners/publishers of
the particular recording. Print music also
involve the rights of arrangers and publishers.
Videos involve a number of copyrights – the
story, script, the filmed product, performances,
soundtracks, publishers, distributors, …
SO – when you, or others in your centre
perform live, play recordings, use videos,
print or project lyrics, use Powerpoint,
record services – you actually require
permission from a number of different
copyright holders, all of who deserve their
© Fortunately there are several companies
who specialise in licensing – to grant these
YES! According to the Australian Copyright
Council, without a license you can:
Perform live music as part of worship or church
services (including weddings, funerals and
© Play sound recordings as part of worship or church
services (including weddings, funerals and
© Play music from radio (not including internet radio) or
TV as background music.
© You can also play, perform or utilize music/
lyrics/works that are in the public domain or for
which you or TSA hold copyright.
© Reproducing
song lyrics, music, photos,
images, art work or other copyrighted
works in any way for any activity.
© Playing ANY PART of a commercially
produced movie/video.
© Performing live music at concerts, fetes,
and other special events that are not
worship services.
© Playing (performing) recorded music at
concerts, fetes, and other special events
that are not worship services.
Several companies help churches & other
organizations to do the right thing, more easily
and effectively.
They collect & distribute royalties on behalf of
copyright holders, so that users CAN have
permission to use copyrighted works.
© and others
Mission Team/THQ has arranged a group
purchase of several licenses (at a significant
discount). These include:
APRA Community Group License
CCL (Church Copyright License)
CVL (Church Video License)
Big Movie Studio License (Heritage group)
ALL corps/centres with a regular worship
service are now covered by these 4 licenses.
You CAN :
© Perform live/recorded music in worship services
& ceremonies (permitted without a licence).
© Perform live or recorded music at any other event
as part of church activities (permitted by your
APRA Community Group licence)
© Charge admission for these performances (it is
ok to take up offering or ask for donation entry).
© Distribute a video recording of the event* (under
some conditions this can be licensed separately
or via other license conditions)
Church Copyright License (CCL)
You CAN:
© Reproduce song lyrics – print, copy, project
© Make (or use) custom musical arrangements
of songs, provided no suitable published
version exists.
© Record services for ministry purposes (up to
15% of church size, may recover costs up to
$5 per audio copy and $15 per video copy).
© Make translations of songs (where no
published version exists).
Church Copyright License (CCL)
© Photocopy sheet music – this requires MRL
(Music Reproduction License)
© Podcast or live stream the musical or
components of your service (unless TSA
owned or public domain).
Church Copyright License (CCL)
© Report on the songs you use from week to week,
in 4 categories: Digital, Print, Recording and
This is easier than you may think, and can be done
online. Go to to set up your
profile and follow the easy walk through. If you
need your OLR access code etc please contact
Louise Mathieson.
Church Video License (CVL) - CCLI
Big Movie Studio License – Heritage group
You CAN:
© Show movies or movie scenes during ministry
© Charge admission
© Advertise titles, producers or characters to the
general public (i.e. media, social media). You can
publicise in church newsletter and
announcements though.
See websites for T&C of licenses and more info on useful
resources like SCREENVUE.
Why are there 2 video licenses?
Because neither CVL or BMSL covers all studios
and producers. Holding only one of these
severely limits options in using movies
effectively in ministry e.g. Disney is covered by
BMSL but Paramount is covered by CVL.
Why do we all have different license numbers?
Even though our Territory has a ‘group
arrangement’ with CCLI, each centre still requires
individual licenses. This is a legal requirement as
licenses are specific to a location/site or a
specific local church expression.
Our group license arrangement is simply a bulk
purchase of all TSA Eastern individual licenses, to
gain a healthy discount and to manage renewal
paperwork centrally.
Each location has a unique Church ID, and unique
license numbers for CCL & CVL as allocated by
What about SongSelect?
SongSelect is a subscription service – not a license
– though it works similarly. Each subscription gives
200 unique song titles per year that users can print
from the online database. You can print a copy of
the lead sheet, the chord chart (and vocal lead in
Premium version), and you can print them in any
key or keys you need.
Individual corps/centres need to purchase their
own subscription as titles, prints & copies need to
be managed by the individual end user.
If you need to make extra copies or photocopies,
you will also need to purchase the MRL (Music
Reproduction License – see the CCLI website).
Who pays for these?
These are part of usual running costs for centres.
© THQ pays the entire group invoice at renewal and
then license fees are usually charged back to
each centre.
© CCL and APRA licenses have been part of regular
corps expenses for some years.
© However as the video licenses are a new
initiative, THQ has paid for the first year’s license
for all centres. From July 2015 subsequent
renewal costs will be passed on as per other
How much do these cost?
CCLI has sliding scale based on congregation
CCL we receive 30% discount; CVL 15%
is a flat fee per centre, approx $71 (we
receive 10% discount)
© BMSL is a flat fee per centre, $175.50 (we
receive 25% discount on lowest rate for all
centres regardless of size).
© By
purchasing licenses as a group, each
centre saves at least $110 a year (and as
much as $250).