Copyright Guidance

Copyright Information for Remote Worship

Background

This material will guide you through copyright issues that we are facing having moved from worshipping in person in church to virtually, due to the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent government restrictions on gatherings. Providing permitted, reliable resources to support this remote worship is now an unexpected but important calling for churches. The FAQs below aim to provide information and advice on copyright issues that may arise when sharing worship online. Although this material has been produced specifically for the pandemic situation you should bear in mind how it applies generally at all other times.

These flowcharts provide an overview of copyright issues:

Electronic worship resource documents

Online worship

You can visit copyright guidance for Singing the Faith here.

The key point to remember about copyright is that anything that you have not created entirely from scratch is ‘third-party material.’ Third party material will have, unless it has been made available freely, a copyright holder. Use of the material without the copyright holder’s permission, correct licence, or other concession infringes their copyright. Third-party materials, if you have permission to use them should always be clearly credited in full (title, author, publisher, year, ISBN and any web link). There is no automatic permission to include short sections of third-party material in worship resources. Following the guidance below will enable you to use copyrighted material (however small) correctly.

Although remote (online) worship is now the norm and there is more sharing of worship resources electronically, you are not necessarily automatically covered by the licences and concessions (e.g. from CCLI {Christian Copyright Licensing International} and ONE LICENSE) that you may use for standard church services. Some of the usual restrictions around needing permission have been relaxed to take account of the changes to worship in response to the unprecedented circumstances of the Covid-19 lockdown; however, these concessions are likely to be removed in the future and the restrictions tightened up again. Therefore, this guide helps to explain the options available both for the current situation and for any remote worship in the future. It includes materials that are available under licences and concessions, but we also advise where materials may need permissions instead. If permission is needed, it should always be granted before you use the material. It can take time to get permission and it may also come with a fee, so you may want to avoid using material that needs permission, wherever possible.

To support Methodist churches in their use of copyrighted worship materials the Methodist Church has issued this copyright waiver to cover the period while we are experiencing the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

 COVID-19 copyright waiver:

The Methodist Church in Britain has made some copyright concessions during the pandemic, which allow any use of content that is our exclusive copyright in any worship context by any medium or method, providing it is non-commercial, to the end of this Connexional year (31/08/2020), and providing it is acknowledged as ‘Used with permission. [Details of content] from [details of publication/source] © Trustees for Methodist Church Purposes. The Methodist Church in Britain’. This includes any of our own original materials in the Methodist Worship Book (see section on Methodist Worship Book below)

In some places we suggest that you give the website link where you found material, or the reference in a book where it can be read, rather than using the material directly; especially if permission would be needed. By doing this, you provide the website link, or other reference, only and so you do not infringe any rights.

The guidance below is generalised for any remote worship resources, including live streams (real time audio or video broadcasts online) and podcasts (electronic audio or video recordings), but with certain features marked up as being specific concessions for the current COVID situation. Any text on this page with a COVID-19  heading describes specific permissions given while pandemic-related restrictions are in place. If you use anything under these concessions, you must check that they are still available as restrictions are lifted. When these temporary concessions expire, you must have the right licence coverage or permissions, or remove every resource that features affected material from your website, social media and other public portals. If not, you risk copyright holders taking legal action against you.

GDPR

You must also make sure that you follow the latest GDPR guidelines. Contact details should only be used for the purpose for which the person gave you consent to use them. They must be kept secure and, if emailing lots of contacts at once, use BCC: (‘blind copy’) so recipients cannot see the other addresses. Users in groups or chats should be made aware that other users may see some details (for example, phone numbers in WhatsApp) and must give consent for this before joining or being added.

Standalone worship materials

These are documents that you may send electronically or by post for private reflection and worship. They might take the form of bulletins, worship aids or ‘pew sheets’. They may also be intended to accompany any live video, streaming, chat meeting or multi-user call. There are additional guidelines below for online materials. We recommend that any electronic versions are sent out in a non-editable format, such as .pdf, to prevent any issues with formatting or content. Below are different types of third-party content and some guidelines to using them.

Online worship

For clarity, we use the term ‘online worship’, to cover all formats, including: live streams (real time audio or video broadcasts online) and podcasts (electronic audio or video recordings) as well as chat meetings (Skype, Zoom, WhatsApp, etc) and multi-user calls, where these may all be treated the same for copyright.

Below are different types of third-party content and some guidelines to using them in these types of worship. If different formats (streams, podcasts, etc) have different copyright considerations, then these are explained in detail.

If you are sending resource documents through private means, such as email or live chat (e.g. Zoom, Skype, WhatsApp) then copyright still applies. If you have signed up for a live chat platform, make sure you are aware of all terms and conditions, including copyright and privacy requirements.

 

Can I use liturgy in worship documents?

Most liturgy is copyrighted and so you would need permission from the copyright holders to use it in these documents.

COVID-19 copyright waiver:

The Methodist Church in Britain has made some copyright concessions during the pandemic, which allow any use of content that is our exclusive copyright in any worship context by any medium or method, providing it is non-commercial, to the end of this Connexional year (31/08/2020), and providing it is acknowledged as ‘Used with permission. [Details of content] from [details of publication/source] © Trustees for Methodist Church Purposes. The Methodist Church in Britain’. This includes any of our own original materials in the Methodist Worship Book.

Be careful to note that some materials in the Methodist Worship Book are not the intellectual property of The Methodist Church in Britain and so will need separate permission to be used.

As a guide, the following items are not covered and, therefore, are not available to you freely under this concession. Further permission is needed for:

Selected prayers, seasonal material, collects and the lectionary. All of these materials are listed on pp.601-605 in the Methodist Worship Book, in the Acknowledgements section. Use of these would need permission from the copyright holders. If in doubt, you could use the opportunity to create a new prayer or collect that is suitable for this situation.

We recommend using only liturgy from The Methodist Worship Book or from English Language Liturgical Consultation (ELLC) at this time. For more information about ELLC, please see below. Any other liturgy would need permission from the copyright holders.

The following liturgical texts in the Methodist Worship Book are from English Language Liturgical Consultation (ELLC):

Glory to God in the highest, the Nicene Creed, the Apostles' Creed, Sursum Corda, Sanctus, Benedictus Qui Venit, Agnus Dei, Gloria Patri, Te Deum Laudamus , Benedictus, Magnificat, Nunc Dimittis and the left hand column version [your/sin/trial] of the Lord's Prayer

ELLC have a number of liturgical resources on their website and they advise: The texts in Praying Together may be used freely and without the need for prior permission. The liturgical text(s) should be properly acknowledged. English translations of (text), © (copyright symbol) 1998, English Language Liturgical Consultation (ELLC), and used by permission. www.englishtexts.org

 If you include any material from Praying Together in your document, be certain to credit the ELLC source fully, as directed.

Please note: There is more information about the copyright licences your church may hold in the hymns and songs for worship section below, but be aware that the licences issued by ONE LICENSE are specifically only for authorised music, so do not cover any liturgy. In contrast, the CLA Church Licence from CCLI allows copying from the listed non-music publications, such as liturgy, for distribution under certain circumstances, including email. To see if a publication is covered, use the Permissions Checker here: https://cla.co.uk

For any CCLI or ONE LICENSE church licences to work, the materials used must be exactly as the original and you should check the terms, following all of the directions for use, crediting and reporting. Any materials produced by you should be intended for your own congregations; if you are a smaller, affiliate of a larger, mother church, you must check whether you need your own licences, as the mother church’s licence may not cover you. If you are adapting or editing materials, you need a specific permission from the copyright holder as the licences do not cover this.

Some liturgies themselves permit retyping for use in church services, but these are intended for ‘pew sheets’ or Orders of Service, for special events like weddings and baptisms, and to be used only on the premises, not for remote worship, which would need permission.

Can I use scripture in worship documents?
All of the copyrights for the psalms, scripture readings and scripture sentences in the Methodist Worship Book are held by other parties, but it may be possible to use these so long as you follow the individual Bible guidelines and on condition it is all correctly cited in your document.
 
Some Bible copyright holders (see below for examples) offer a generous ‘fair use’ guideline, allowing use of up to 500 verses per document, so long as this does not amount to a complete book of the Bible nor account for 25% or more of the total word count of the document. Every scripture quotation used within this guideline must be marked up with the book, chapter and verse, as well as the any acronym requested by the copyright holder, in addition to any credit line, unless otherwise directed.

New Revised Standard Version (NRSV) and Revised Standard Version (RSV)

These versions may be used within the guidelines given above for electronic documents or as text on websites, but should not be used for other electronic purposes (audio, video, etc) without permission. Every scripture quotation used must be marked up [NRSV] or [RSV] accordingly. You do not need to put in a source credit to the Bible edition itself, so long as you use the acronyms requested, as they class resource documents like these as non-salable media.
You can see the details of their terms here.

 
New International Version (NIV)

This version may be used within the guidelines given above for electronic documents or on websites, The NIV guidelines state that emailing is permitted; verses do not require an acronym credit, but the Bible edition must be credited in full somewhere on the document. They request:  Notice of copyright must appear on the title or copyright page as follows:

“Scripture quotations taken from The Holy Bible, New International Version® NIV® Copyright © 1973 1978 1984 2011 by Biblica, Inc. TM Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.”
 
You can see the full details of their terms here.
 

Other Bible Resources
 

Worshippers can be directed to read specific verses in their own copies of the Bible after the worship by referring them to the book, chapter and verse. This may be quicker than retyping or formatting a longer passage.
 
Alternatively, in an electronic document, you can include a link to a website such as https://bible.oremus.org or any other, reputable online scripture resource that clearly states they have the permission to use the material.

Can I use hymns and songs in worship documents?

For clarity, the word ‘songs’ below means hymns and songs; ‘words’ means lyrics and song words; ‘tune’ means tune or melody; ‘arrangement’ indicates a musical composition to accompany the tune and ‘score’ indicates the musical representation of either the tune, arrangement or both.

There is a detailed page of guidance relating to copyright and Singing the Faith here.

If you are only including the words of songs in your document, then you can direct the worshippers to use any tune you or they wish – or leave them to choose. It is only when you include the tune in some form (e.g. score, audio, video) that licences or permissions are needed for the music. In general, it may be best not to include the score at all, but guidance is included below to help further.

Audio clips - do not try to insert these into your documents. Audio clips from third-parties may have complicated copyrights that are not covered by licenses or concessions.

If in any doubt about rights, you could provide just a link to an original version online that shows it is licensed and used with permission – for example on Singing the Faith Plus – which your worshippers can then visit if they choose.

If an artist has their own website, or if they have a verified YouTube channel or Facebook page (their username will have a tick in a circle, or a musical note next to it, if the platform has checked they are genuine, see below), they might have an official audio or video that you could link to.

Use of words without licences

 If the person who wrote the words died over 70 years ago, then it is likely that those words are now in the public domain. You can check the copyright status of sacred song words on sites such as Hymnary.org. If the words are public domain, then you can use them without a licence or a permission.

If your church holds a copyright licence with CCLI or ONE LICENSE (formerly Calamus), please see the details for these below.

COVID-19 copyright waiver:

The Methodist Church in Britain has made some copyright concessions during the pandemic, which allow any use of content that is our exclusive copyright in any worship context by any medium or method, providing it is non-commercial, to the end of this Connexional year (31/08/2020), and providing it is acknowledged as ‘Used with permission. [Details of content] from [details of publication/source] © Trustees for Methodist Church Purposes. The Methodist Church in Britain’. This includes any of our own song words in the Methodist Worship Book.

This includes the following hymns from Singing the Faith:

252         Jesus the Lord said: I am the Bread

410         Lord, your Church on earth is seeking

Be careful to note that most of the songs in Singing the Faith are not the intellectual property of The Methodist Church in Britain and would need to be checked to see if they list a copyright holder for the words (‘Words © …’). If they do, then permission may need to be requested, if they are not covered by other licences you hold (see the notes on CCLI and ONE LICENSE, below). Those song words in Singing the Faith that do not list a copyright holder are public domain (for example, all words by Charles Wesley).

If in doubt, in an electronic document, you can include a link to a website, such as Singing the Faith Plus that clearly displays they have already got permission to feature the songs.

All hymns published on Singing the Faith Plus are published on the understanding that they can be used freely by site-users, with any copyright information printed as appropriate. If an author or composer is listed with CCLI, the hymn should be included under regular reporting requirements. To check, refer to the CCL and MRL Authorised Catalogue Lists available online at: churches.uk.ccli.com/resources/authorised

Words only – churches with CCLI and ONE LICENSE

If your church has a CCLI Licence or ONE LICENSE (formerly Calamus) then you may use the words of songs given in their authorised lists, in worship aids and song sheets, which can then be printed or electronically reproduced and shared, including as .pdf files, by email or through a file-sharing app. The songs must be fully credited following the licence guidelines and the use must be reported as directed by the licence terms.

CCLI

Under the Church Copyright Licence (CCL), the words can be retyped for use in your document. For more information, see: www.global.ccli.com/wp-content/uploads/fact-file-reproducing.pdf

Under the Music Reproduction Licence (MRL), which is an add-on supplement to the CCL, you can use the downloadable version of the lyrics from the CCLI SongSelect website, if there is one, or you can scan and use the words as typeset in a publication of which your church owns at least one purchased copy. If the typesetting is over 25 years old then it does not have to be on the approved list (MRL Licence clause 2.1.1.2.) to be covered by this licence. For more information, see: www.global.ccli.com/wp-content/uploads/fact-file-photocopying.pdf To check for authorised songs, go to: https://uk.search.ccli.com

ONE LICENSE

If your worship documents containing song lyrics are made available online, you need to monitor the number of downloads and if the users exceed your average church attendance you should arrange a licence adjustment with ONE LICENSE accordingly.

If the Member Publisher (ie a publishing house) has provided a download of the words on the ONE LICENSE site, you can use that version, or you can scan and use the congregational version as typeset in a publication, if your church owns at least one purchased copy. The licence also covers you to retype the words for use in your document. For more information see: www.onelicense.net/faqs and also the section ‘If technology is at your disposal…here. To check for authorised songs, go to: https://www.onelicense.net/search 

Musical scores

Musical scores, even for public domain tunes and arrangement, are not automatically free to share. For most worshippers they do not need a score, or even a tune to follow, so it may not be worth including these in general worship resource documents.

The words and tune to a song often have different copyright terms unless all written by the same person and released at the same time. The arrangement may be by the same person who wrote the tune, or be by someone else completely and have a further copyright. This means that there may be different copyright holders involved and that some aspects may still be in copyright even when others have become public domain. You need to be aware of this and check all of the different potential copyright holders if you are using both words and music.

If your church holds a copyright licence with CCLI or ONE LICENSE, please see the details for these below. Alternatively, there are some scores that you can potentially use without permissions or licences.

If the person who wrote the tune died over 70 years ago, then it is likely that it is now in the public domain. The same goes for the arrangement, if the person who wrote that died over 70 years ago. You can search online to check whether the tune or arrangement are public domain on sites such as Hymnary.org or Singing the Faith Plus that confirm who owns the copyright. If the tune or arrangement are public domain, then you can use them without a licence or a permission if you rewrite them out. It should be noted that, as copyright is held in typesetting for 25 years, any recent typeset scoring of public domain tunes and arrangements may still be in copyright by the publisher and need a licence or permission.

Be careful to note that most of the songs in Singing the Faith are not the intellectual property of The Methodist Church in Britain and would need to be checked to see if they list a copyright holder for the music (‘Music © …’). If they do, then permission may need to be requested if they are not covered by other licences you hold (see the notes on CCLI and ONE LICENSE, below).

Those songs in Singing the Faith that do not list a music copyright holder are public domain for the tune but the musical score edition should be checked for details of the arrangement, which may still be in copyright. As an example, StF  503 Love Divine: The main tune, Blaenwern, is public domain as the composer, William Penfro Rowlands, died in 1937. However, the arrangement given in StF and the descant provided for v3 are in copyright as they are by a more recent, living composer, Paul Leddington Wright.

Musical Scores – churches with CCLI and ONE LICENSE

If your church has a CCLI Licence or ONE LICENSE (formerly Calamus) then you may use the score of songs given in their authorised lists, in worship aids and song sheets, which can then be printed or electronically reproduced and shared, including as .pdf files, by email or through a file-sharing app. The songs must be fully credited under the guidelines provided and the use must be reported as directed in the licence terms.

CCLI

Under the Church Copyright Licence (CCL), the score can be retyped in a music notation program, or written out by hand, for use in your document. For more information, see: www.global.ccli.com/wp-content/uploads/fact-file-reproducing.pdf

Under the Music Reproduction Licence (MRL), which is an add-on supplement to the CCL, you can use the downloadable version from CCLI SongSelect, if there is one, or you can scan and use the score as typeset in a publication of which your church owns at least one purchased copy. If the typesetting is over 25 years old then it does not have to be on the approved list (MRL Licence clause 2.1.1.2.) to be covered by this licence. For more information, see: www.global.ccli.com/wp-content/uploads/fact-file-photocopying.pdf

 To check for authorised songs, go to: https://.uk.search.ccli.com

ONE LICENSE

The main Annual Reprint License covers the use of score intended for congregational singing only (which ONE LICENCE also refers to as a music or reprint box), as long as the number of worshippers is in line with your average weekly church attendance. If your worship documents are made available online, you need to monitor the number of downloads and if the users exceed this you should arrange a licence adjustment with ONE LICENSE accordingly.

If the Member Publisher (ie publishing house) has provided a download of the congregational score on the ONE LICENSE site, you can use that version, or you can scan and use the congregational version as typeset in a publication of which your church owns at least one purchased copy. The licence also covers you to retype this in a music notation program, or write it out by hand for use in your document.

For more information see: www.onelicense.net/faqs  What can I reproduce? What is excluded?  and also the section ‘If technology is at your disposal…here. To check for authorised songs, go to: https://www.onelicense.net/search

Can I use secular music in worship documents?
The best way is to find an official version online that shows it is licensed and used with permission, then you could include a link to it instead for your worshippers to visit if they choose to. If an artist has their own website, or if they have a verified YouTube channel or Facebook page (their username will have a tick in a circle, or a musical note next to it, if the platform has checked they are genuine), that would be an official source of audio or video that you could link to.
Generally, the main church licences and concessions that a church may have access to, tend to only apply to sacred music for use in a service in a church itself. Even secular tunes that are used in services normally may not be covered, but there are some songs that you can use without permissions or licences.

Secular lyrics

If the person who wrote the words died over 70 years ago, then it is likely that those words are now in the public domain. If the song words are public domain, then you can use them without a licence or a permission It can be harder to check the copyright for secular song words online and, just because they appear on websites, this does not mean they are public domain. You need to check when the writer died, or if they are still living. If in doubt, don’t use it.


Secular musical scores

Musical scores, even for public domain tunes and arrangement, are not automatically free to share. Most worshippers do not need a score, or even a tune to follow, so it may not be worth including these for secular songs in worship resource documents. As most secular music is not covered by the available licences or concessions, avoid using secular music score without specific permission.
Can I use poetry, prose and other text in worship documents?
The CLA Church Licence from CCLI allows copying or digital reproduction from the listed non-music publications, such as liturgy, for distribution under certain circumstances, including email. To see if a publication is covered, use the Permissions Checker here: https://cla.co.uk. Retyping is not allowed and would require permission. The licences from ONE LICENSE are specifically only for authorised music, so do not cover any other types of publications.
Generally, the main church licences and concessions tend to only apply to sacred publications being used in a church setting. Even secular materials that may be used in services normally may not be covered in documents like these, that are not being used services in a church, but there are some materials that you can use without permissions or licences.
For the classics, you could consider using a version that was published when the poet or author was alive, so long as they died over 70 years ago and the copyrights were not renewed. You can check the WATCH database for this and also for copyright status for more modern writers. As with song words, just because these texts appear on websites, this does not mean they are public domain so you need to check when the writer died, or if they are still living.
For example, under these terms, original versions of poems by poets such as Wordsworth, Keats, Yeats, Rossetti, Blake and Burns are public domain; as are original texts by Austen, Dickens, Eliot and Twain; and so these can be used. For original versions, you could look at Project Gutenberg. Classic works may have been modernised and any modernisation will likely be in copyright, this goes especially for Shakespeare, so if using any of his works, use a confirmed public domain version, such as The Complete Works at MIT or from Project Gutenberg.
Everything else will need permission, unless it has been released under a confirmed COVID concession.
Alternatively, if you can find an original version online that shows it is licensed and used with permission, then you could include a link to it instead, for your worshippers to visit if they choose to.
Can I use images in worship documents?
‘Images’ include works of art, photographs, drawings, sketches, figures, graphs or any other pictures or graphic representations, as well as scans or photos of these.
 
Generally, the main church licences and concessions tend to only apply to sacred publications being used in a church setting. Even secular images that may be used in services normally may not be covered in documents like these, that are not being used in services in a church. Use of images in isolation is not generally covered by CCLI or ONE LICENSE licences, even with their add-ons.
Photographs which are older, or show classic works of art, can still have complicated copyrights, as rights can be held by the owner of the original, whoever made the electronic image of it and also their agents who are licensing that version for use. Permission would be needed from every one of these copyright holders and so images cannot be assumed to be public domain based on their age or the death of the photographer.
It is not advisable to create your own image based on another image or artwork, as the original copyright holders could hold some adaptation rights in your new work, so you would need their permission. You would also need permission from the site owner (given in a signed property release or consent form) for any photos that were taken without specific prior permission before crossing a paywall or other private barrier – for example at a visitor attraction – because your photo might include material that is someone else’s intellectual property, including signage, display or even architecture.
For any photos of people, even your own congregation, you would need their permission (given through a signed model release or consent form), no matter who took them. You can find some guidance regarding consent forms and photography at events here. There are some specific release forms for minors here, but you would also need releases for any adults.
As you are creating this document as part of the work of your church, be aware that some copyright holders may class that as commercial use and so any sites making images available for non-commercial could may challenge churches using of their images without permission.
There are some images that you can use without permissions or licences and you could consider using the following:
• your own image that meets the guidelines above.
• an image that someone within the congregation that meets the guidelines above and for which they have given you permission to use in the document.
• public domain images – if they really are! Don’t just take the internet’s word for this, you need to be certain that anyone who may hold rights has chosen to waive them. Unfortunately, on many websites, images are used without permission and are not credited, so they look ‘safe’ but are not – or they may be safe under US law but are not under UK law, which is an issue with images on Wikipedia, for example. Make sure to research images on reputable sites that always credit them fully.
• Images released under a Creative Commons licence. These images are free to use with no copyright credit tag required or permission. However, you need to be cautious as some images on these websites may appear to be free or part of the creative commons, when they are not.

Reputable Creative Commons websites


You may want to consider using images that are clearly marked up as Creative Commons or Public Domain from one of these ‘safe’ sites:
Memes are prolific on social media but, like other images, they can have complicated rights. Often, memes are created by one person but based on an image by another and may then feature text from a further source; for example: the image might be a film still or a famous photograph and the words may be from a song.
Gifs (short, moving images) are basically the same as memes in terms of rights, but you are using a moving image. There are some great memes and gifs, but they’re a copyright nightmare. Due to this, memes and gifs are unfortunately not worth the potential risk when there’s better material out there and we do not recommend including them.
Can I use videos in worship documents?
Video rights can be complicated, as rights are held in the visuals, the sound and the combination of the two; each part can have several copyright holders. Third-party videos are not covered by any of the CCLI or ONE LICENSE licences, or add-ons, available. Ideally, link to a video, rather than trying to insert videos in your document and be sure to link to an official version of the video. If an artist has their own website, or if they have a verified YouTube channel or Facebook page (their username will have a tick in a circle, or a musical note next to it, if the platform has checked they are genuine), they might have an official video that you could link to.
Can I use commercial materials, brands and adverts in worship documents?
Showing a company’s logo or other intellectual property needs permission, which may be complicated and expensive. Alluding to it might be acceptable, if it is not endorsement, criticism or otherwise controversial; a general reference of recommendation to it would be fine, or you could provide a link to the company’s own original and genuine source if there is one online, so worshippers can access it if want they more information.
Can I produce worship resource documents for online worship?
These are documents that you may send electronically or by post for private reflection and worship that are meant to be used alongside online worship in a live stream (real time audio or video broadcast online) or podcast (electronic audio or video recording), chat meeting or multi-user call. They might take the form of bulletins, worship aids or pew sheets. We recommend that any electronic documents are sent out in a non-editable format, such as .pdf, to prevent any issues with formatting or content.
The main guidelines are the same as those above for Standalone Worship Materials, so you must be careful that the materials in the documents are covered by any licences you hold, or concessions you can apply.
If your licences cover material in the online worship itself, but not in the supporting document, you should just refer the worshippers to follow the online worship itself for that part. Otherwise, you should get permission to use copyright materials in any document.
Especially for material such as scripture or musical score, you may find that the reverse is that case: that your licences cover material in documents, but not in the online worship itself. In those instances, you may perhaps suggest the worshippers pause the online worship and follow the document or link provided for that part, or leave space for them to do this. Otherwise, to use the material in the online worship, you would need to get the permission.
Can I use liturgy in online worship?
Most liturgy is copyrighted and so you would need permission from the copyright holders to use it in online worship.
COVID-19 copyright waiver:
The Methodist Church in Britain has made some copyright concessions during the pandemic, which allow any use of content that is our exclusive copyright in any worship context by any medium or method, providing it is non-commercial, to the end of this Connexional year (31/08/2020), and providing it is acknowledged as ‘Used with permission. [Details of content] from [details of publication/source] © Trustees for Methodist Church Purposes. The Methodist Church in Britain’. This includes any of our own original materials in the Methodist Worship Book.
Be careful to note that some materials in the Methodist Worship Book are not the intellectual property of The Methodist Church in Britain and so will need separate permission to be used.
As a guide, the following items are not covered and, therefore, are not available to you freely under this concession. Further permission is needed for:
Selected prayers, seasonal material, collects and the lectionary. All of these materials are listed on pp.601-605 in the Methodist Worship Book, in the Acknowledgements section. Use of these would need permission from the copyright holders. If in doubt, you could use the opportunity to create a new prayer or collect that is suitable for this situation.
We recommend using only liturgy from The Methodist Worship Book or from English Language Liturgical Consultation (ELLC) at this time. For more information about ELLC, please see below. Any other liturgy would need permission from the copyright holders.
The following liturgical texts in the Methodist Worship Book are from English Language Liturgical Consultation (ELLC):

Glory to God in the highest, the Nicene Creed, the Apostles' Creed, Sursum Corda, Sanctus, Benedictus Qui Venit, Agnus Dei, Gloria Patri, Te Deum Laudamus , Benedictus, Magnificat, Nunc Dimittis and the left hand column version [your/sin/trial] of the Lord's Prayer
ELLC have a number of liturgical resources on their website and advise: The texts in Praying Together may be used freely and without the need for prior permission. The liturgical text(s) should be properly acknowledged: English translations of (text), © (copyright symbol) 1998, English Language Liturgical Consultation (ELLC), and used by permission. 
If you include any material from Praying Together in your document, be certain to credit the ELLC source fully, as directed.
Please note: There is more information about the copyright licences your church may hold in the hymns and songs for worship section below, but be aware that the licences from ONE LICENSE are specifically only for authorised music, so do not cover any other types of publications. The CLA Church Licence from CCLI allows copying or digital reproduction from the listed non-music publications, such as liturgy, for distribution under certain circumstances, including email. Retyping is not allowed and would require permission. To see if a publication is covered, use the Permissions Checker here.
Can I use scripture in online worship?
All of the copyrights for the psalms, scripture readings and scripture sentences in the Methodist Worship Book are held by other parties, but it may be possible to use these so long as you follow the individual Bible guidelines and on condition it is all correctly credited within your remote worship.
Some Bible copyright holders (see below) offer a generous ‘fair use’ guideline, allowing use of up to 500 verses per document, so long as this does not amount to a complete book of the Bible nor account for 25% or more of the total word count of the document, but not all of them confirm that this covers streaming of podcasts. Every scripture quotation used within this guideline must be marked up with the book, chapter and verse, as well as the short code given, in addition to any credit line, unless otherwise directed.

New Revised Standard Version (NRSV) and Revised Standard Version (RSV)

These versions may not be used for other audio, video or any other online purposes without permission, so cannot be used in online worship. They may only be used in electronic media if these come under their definition of non-salable media (which include ‘bulletins, orders of service, newsletters, class handouts, transparencies or other presentation media’ by churches), so could be included in documents designed to accompany the online worship. They specifically advise: “The Fair Use Guidelines do not apply to Phone Applications, or other New Media Platforms (web sites, apps, etc.).” For more information, visit:  www.nrsvbibles.org/index.php/licensing/

New International Version (NIV)

This version may be used for audio but there is no mention of use in streaming or ‘new media’, so it is not made clear whether they may be used for online worship if they are spoken aloud but not included onscreen as text. Therefore, the NIV is only recommended for audio recordings and not any format that includes a video or images. The verses do not require an acronym credit for audio use, but the Bible edition must be credited in full somewhere in the online worship. You can see the full details of their terms here.

Other Bible Resources

Worshippers can be directed to read specific verses in their own copies of the Bible after the worship by referring them to the book, chapter and verse, rather than you reading them aloud.
Alternatively, in subtitles or any other onscreen format that will permit linking, you could include a link to a website such as https://bible.oremus.org or any other, reputable online scripture resource that clearly states they have the permission to use the material.
Can I use hymns and songs in online worship?
For clarity, the word ‘songs’ below means hymns and songs; ‘words’ means lyrics and song words; ‘tune’ means tune or melody; ‘arrangement’ indicates a musical composition to accompany the tune and ‘score’ indicates the musical representation of either the tune, arrangement or both.
There is a detailed page of guidance relating to copyright and Singing the Faith here.
The words and tune to a song often have different copyright terms unless all are written by the same person and released at the same time. The arrangement may be by the same person who wrote the tune, or be by someone else completely and have a further copyright. In addition, there are rights in the performance of the song – not only held by the copyright holders of the original, but also by the performers. This means that there may be lots of copyright holders and some aspects may still be in copyright even when others have become public domain, so you need to be aware of this and check all of the different potential copyright holders if you are including music.
If you have a CCLI or ONE LICENSE then there are lots of songs that you can use and you can see more about this below in the ONLINE WORSHIP with CCLI and ONELICENSE section, below.
Be careful to note that most of the songs in Singing the Faith would need to be checked to see if they list copyright holders for the words and for the music. If they do, then permission may need to be requested if they are not covered by other licences you hold (see the notes on CCLI and ONE LICENSE, below). Those songs in Singing the Faith that do not list a music copyright holder are public domain for the tune but the musical score edition should be checked for details of the arrangement, which may still be in copyright.
As an example, StF 503 Love Divine: The main tune, Blaenwern, is public domain as the composer, William Penfro Rowlands, died in 1937. However, the arrangement given in StF and the descant provided for v3 are in copyright as they are by a more recent, living composer, Paul Leddington Wright,
If the words, tune, arrangement and performance rights are all public domain then you can perform them live in your online worship, without licences or permissions.
You can search online or use Hymnary.org or Singing the Faith Plus to see who owns the copyright of sacred songs.
If in any doubt about rights, you could provide just a link to an original version online that shows it is licensed and used with permission – for example on Singing the Faith Plus – which your worshippers can then visit if they choose. If an artist has their own website, or if they have a verified YouTube channel or Facebook page (where their username will have a tick in a circle, or a musical note next to it, if the platform has checked they are genuine), they might have an official audio or video that you could link to.

All hymns published on Singing the Faith Plus are published on the understanding that they can be used freely by site-users, with any copyright information printed as appropriate. If an author or composer is listed with CCLI, the hymn should be included under regular reporting requirements. To check, refer to the CCL and MRL Authorised Catalogue Lists available online at: churches.uk.ccli.com/resources/authorised

Online worship with CCLI, ONE LICENSE and LOML

Both CCLI and ONE LICENSE offer streaming licences, which are add-ons to their main licences. These licences include the right to perform live music in online worship and also show lyrics on screen, to enable worshippers to sing along. If your church has these licences, you may use songs given in their authorised lists in your online worship. The songs must be fully credited under the guidelines provided and the use must be reported as directed in the licence terms.
CCLI and ONE LICENSE do not cover any music that is not on their approved lists, even if performed by your music team. If you want to use any other music, then you should refer to the commercial and secular music section.
There are also some additional clauses to note with these streaming licences. The online worship must be hosted by a church or organisation that has a current CCLI licence or ONE LICENSE and also has a current CCLI Streaming add-on or ONE LICENSE Podcast/Streaming licence add-on.
• These licences alone are sufficient only if the online worship is being hosted with Facebook or YouTube, as those platforms already have their own licences that cover the performance rights
Note: YouTube and Facebook have algorithms searching for copyrighted material and you may need to prove you have the correct CCLI or ONE LICENSE licences or they will suspend or remove your content.
• If the online worship is being hosted on any other online platform, including your own website or via Zoom, then a PRS for Music Limited Online Music Licence (LOML) must be held. This is mandatory even if you are with CCLI or ONE LICENSE and have their normal licences and the streaming add-ons.
Note the relevant licences must be in place for the duration the video is online, so if the streaming add-on, the LOML or any of the other base licences are not kept current by the hosting church, then any affected online worship recordings must be taken down, or penalties may be incurred.
To check for authorised songs, go to: https://uk.search.ccli.com
To check for ONE LICENSE authorised songs, go to: www.onelicense.net/search
COVID-19  Resound Worship
Resound Worship have released all of their material for use in streaming, at this time only. Their notes do not mention podcasts, but if you have the correct CCLI or ONE LICENSE licences (more about these below) then they confirm you would be covered for those, too.
They state: “During the Covid-19 crisis, we give permission for all churches worldwide to stream Resound Worship songs. This includes our videos, our recordings, our lyrics and your own performances. If you have a streaming licence, we’d appreciate it if you would report your usage. If you don’t, we would like you to use our material anyway. We don't make copyright claims on YouTube and Facebook, so you should be able to include the songs without your feed being interrupted.”
See more here.
Can I use commercial and secular music in online worship?
Any music created by your music team that is not completely original to them, or any performances by your music team of any music that is not covered by licences that you hold, or is not otherwise confirmed completely public domain, would need permission for use in your online worship, from all of the copyright holders for the words, the music and for any performance rights.
Any music recorded by anyone else, including commercial recordings played from a CD, LP, mp3, online or other copy, used in your online worship would need permission from all of the copyright holders for the words, the music and also all of the performance rights, including permission from  the performer. It is therefore much better to link to a third-party recording, rather than inserting or playing it in your online worship. Look for an official version online that shows it is licensed and used with permission, then include a link to it for your worshippers to visit if they choose to. If an artist has their own website, or if they have a verified YouTube channel or Facebook page (where their username will have a tick in a circle, or a musical note next to it, if the platform has checked they are genuine), that would be an official source of audio or video that you could link to.
Can I use a musical score in online worship?
Although both CCLI and ONE LICENSE confirm lyrics may be shown onscreen during online worship under their streaming licence add-ons, neither permit scores to be included and that would require permission. It is unlikely that this would benefit general worshippers and so we do not recommend musical scores of any type are included in any online worship.
Under certain circumstances, musical scores may be included in a resource document to accompany the online worship – please refer to the section on Musical Scores, in the standalone worship materials guidelines.
If your music team are creating music for your online worship, see the next section, Can I use resources intended to help create music for online worship?, for guidance on how to help them access scores for rehearsal and performance.
Can I use resources intended to help create music in online worship?
This section refers to recordings made by you, or members of your music team, choir or congregation performing the music, intended only for inclusion in your online worship. For clarity, they are referred to below as ‘music team’.
If the words, tune, arrangement and performance rights are all public domain then your music team can make recordings of these or perform them live in your online worship, without licences or permissions.
Normally, if you have members of your music team, choir or congregation creating music that will then be edited into online worship, separate performance and other permissions will be needed, as they are not performing live in a ‘real’ service, so any licences that you may hold do not cover them.
If you want to use copies of anyone else’s performances, in any format, then you should refer to the commercial and secular music section.
You can search Hymnary or Singing the Faith Plus to see who owns the copyright of sacred songs.
COVID-19
CCLI have agreed a concession to allow your music team to pre-record the songs as long as such recordings are used only as part of your online worship, during current restrictions. To help them access the words and score to rehearse and perform you can get the add-on Music Reproduction Licence (MRL), which allows you to download a version of these from CCLI SongSelect website, if there is one, or scan and use the words and score as typeset in a publication of which your church owns at least one purchased copy. This scan can then be emailed, or sent via a file-sharing app. If the typesetting is over 25 years old then it does not have to be on the approved list (MRL Licence clause 2.1.1.2.) to be covered by this licence.
For more information, see: www.global.ccli.com/wp-content/uploads/fact-file-photocopying.pdf. To check for authorised songs, go to: https://uk.search.ccli.com.
ONE LICENSE recommend that if your music team create a pre-recorded version, you will be covered as long as this is self-made and intended for your online worship. Their main Annual Reprint License covers the use of score intended for congregational singing only, so you should only use this version. If the Member Publisher has provided a download of this on the ONE LICENSE site, you can use that version, or you can scan and use the congregational version as typeset in a publication of which your church owns at least one purchased copy. The licence also covers you to retype this in a music notation program, or write it out by hand for use in your document.
For more information see: www.onelicense.net/faqs What can I reproduce? What is excluded?  and also: news.onelicense.net/2020/05/22/best-practices-for-posting-your-services-to-social-media.
To check for ONE LICENSE authorised songs, go to: www.onelicense.net/search
If you do not have a music team that can help with providing recorded music, you might consider using backing tracks.
MultiTracks are working on a streaming licence, but this was not ready in time for the current situation. However, they confirm some of their Partners have agreed to offer a gratis licence for the duration.
For more information, see: www.multitracks.com/covid-19 and to find out more about which tracks may be offered under this concession, go to: www.multitracks.com/blog/gratis-license-for-web-streaming
Can I use poetry, prose and other text in online worship?

Generally, the main church licences and concessions tend to only apply to sacred publications being used in a church setting. Even secular materials that may be used in services normally may not be covered in online worship, but there are some materials that you can use without permissions or licences. There are some other guidelines that might apply, but they can be very subjective and have a level of risk, so we do not recommend using such materials.

For the classics, you could consider using a version that was published when the poet or author was alive, so long as they died over 70 years ago and the copyrights were not renewed. You can check the WATCH database for this and also for copyright status for more modern writers. As with song words, just because these texts appear on websites, this does not mean they are public domain so you need to check when the writer died, or if they are still living.

For example, under these terms, original versions of poems by poets such as Wordsworth, Keats, Yeats, Rossetti, Blake and Burns are public domain; as are original texts by Austen, Dickens, Eliot and Twain; and so these can be used. For original versions, you could look at Project Gutenberg. Classic works may have been modernised and any modernisation will likely be in copyright, this goes especially for Shakespeare, so if using any of his works, use a confirmed public domain version, such as The Complete Works at MIT or from Project Gutenberg.

Everything else will need permission, unless it has been released under a confirmed COVID concession. Alternatively, if you can find an original version online that shows it is licensed and used with permission, then you could include a link to it instead for your worshippers to visit if they choose to.
Can I use images in online worship?
‘Images’ include works of art, photographs, drawings, sketches, figures, graphs or any other pictures or graphic representations, as well as scans or photos of these.
There are some images that you can use in online worship without permissions or licences, and you could consider using the following:

• Your own image that meets the guidelines above
• An image that belongs to someone within the congregation that meets the guidelines above and for which they have given you permission to use in the document
• Public domain images – if they really are! Don’t just take the internet’s word for this, you need to be certain that anyone who may hold rights has chosen to waive them. Unfortunately, on many websites, images are used without permission and are not credited, so they look ‘safe’ but are not – or they may be safe under US law but are not under UK law, which is an issue with images on Wikipedia, for example. Make sure to research images on reputable sites that always credit them fully.
• Images released under a Creative Commons licence. These images are free to use with no copyright credit tag required or permission. However, you need to be cautious as some images on these websites may appear to be free or part of the creative commons, when they are not.

Reputable Creative Commons websites

You may want to consider using images that are clearly marked up as Creative Commons or Public Domain from one of these ‘safe’ sites:
Generally, the main church licences and concessions tend to only apply to sacred publications being used in a church setting. Even secular images that may be used in services normally may not be permitted for online use. Use of images in isolation in online worship is not generally covered by CCLI or ONE LICENSE licences, or their streaming add-ons.
Photographs which are older, or show classic works of art, can still have complicated copyrights, as rights can be held by the owner of the original, whoever made the electronic image of it and also their agents who are licensing that version for use. Permission would be needed from every one of these copyright holders and so image cannot be assumed to be public domain based solely on their age or the death of the photographer.
It is not advisable to create your own image based on another image or artwork, as the original copyright holders could hold some adaptation rights in your new work, so you would need their permission. You would also need permission from the site owner (given in a signed property release or consent form) for any photos that were taken without specific prior permission before crossing a paywall or other private barrier – for example at a visitor attraction – because your photo might include material that is someone else’s intellectual property, including signage, display or even architecture.
For any photos of people, even your own congregation, you would need their permission (given through a signed model release or consent form), no matter who took them. You can find some guidance regarding consent forms and photography at events here. There are some specific release forms for minors here, but you would also need releases for any adults.
As you are making this online worship public, as part of the work of your church, be aware that some copyright holders may class that as commercial use and so any sites making images available for non-commercial use could find and challenge use of their images without permission.
Memes are prolific on social media but, like other images, they can have complicated rights. Often, memes are created by one person but based on an image by another and may then feature text from a further source; for example: the image might be a film still or a famous photograph and the words may be from a song.
Gifs (short, moving images) are basically the same as memes in terms of rights, but you are using a moving image. There are some great memes and gifs, but they’re a copyright nightmare. Due to this, memes and gifs are unfortunately not worth the potential risk and we do not recommend including them.
Can I use videos in online worship?
Video rights can be complicated, as rights are held in the visuals, the sound and the combination of the two; each part can have several copyright holders. Third-party videos are not covered by any of the CCLI or ONE LICENSE licences, or streaming add-ons, available.
COVID-19
Resound Worship have released all of their material for use in streaming, at this time only. Their notes do not mention podcasts, but if you have the correct CCLI or ONE LICENSE licences (more about these below) then they confirm you would be covered for online worship.
They state: “During the Covid-19 crisis, we give permission for all churches worldwide to stream Resound Worship songs. This includes our videos, our recordings, our lyrics and your own performances. If you have a streaming licence, we’d appreciate it if you would report your usage. If you don’t, we would like you to use our material anyway.
We don't make copyright claims on YouTube and Facebook, so you should be able to include the songs without your feed being interrupted.”
See more here.
Ideally, link to a video, rather than trying to insert any third-party videos in your online worship and be sure find an official version to link to.. If an artist has their own website, or if they have a verified YouTube channel or Facebook page (their username will have a tick in a circle, or a musical note next to it, if the platform has checked they are genuine), they might have an official video that you could link to.
Can I use commercial materials, brands and adverts in online worship?
Showing a company’s logo or other intellectual property in online worship needs permission. which may be complicated and expensive. Alluding to it might be acceptable, if it is not endorsement, criticism or otherwise controversial; a general reference of recommendation to it would be fine, or you could provide a link to the company’s own original and genuine source if there is one online, so worshippers can access it if they want more information.
What other information is available elsewhere?
ONE LICENSE, How It Works 
Resound Worship, Licensing explained for streaming worship songs in the UK, C. Juby, 6th April 2020
Royal School of Church Music, Live Streaming of Church Services
Law & Religion UK, Streaming church services: an (updated) guide to copyright and religion. F. Cranmer, 17th March 2020 

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