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Sleeping Well at Night

Franklin just wants to make sure everything is covered.

Thankfully, CCLI makes obtaining the proper permission simple.

He’s not a control freak. He’s not OCD. But he is the Administrative Pastor for Desert Plains Church, and he sleeps better at night if he knows the church is prepared for any imaginable scenario.

While the rest of the staff reads books on leadership, spiritual renewal and personal growth, Franklin’s list of must-reads cover topics like church insurance policies, emergency readiness, crisis management, regulations for non-profit organizations and the like.

At a recent board meeting, the subject of CCLI came up. In preparation for next year’s budget, one of the board members questioned whether the CCLI License was really necessary. Franklin had just read a very thorough book entitled Copyright Law and the Church, by Richard Hammar, a well-known author, attorney and CPA. Hammar mentioned CCLI’s License as a convenient method to secure the proper legal permission to reproduce song lyrics, live service recordings and many other copyright-related activities typical of modern churches. So Franklin was quick to assure the entire board that the $388 per year for their 800-member church was a very small price to pay for the blanket coverage provided by CCLI for reproduction activities from over 350,000 worship songs.

And regarding the Church Video License, also obtained through CCLI, he reminded them that although Steve, the lead pastor, only occasionally used movie scenes for his sermon illustrations, still the Children’s Ministry showed Veggie Tales movies (or something similar) in childcare pretty much every week. And the sub-ministries (Women’s, Student, Small groups) often showed movies at their various events. To comply with copyright law, all these showings needed proper permission, which the Church Video License provides.

Aside from the legal obligations, Franklin also reminded the board of the deeper ethical issues involved. These songs and movies represented a lot of hard work from creative people, and were rightfully considered someone else’s property. Intellectual property is the proper term. “We can’t just use something that belongs to someone else without their permission,” said Franklin. “We need to do what’s right.”

“We can’t just use something that belongs to someone else without their permission,” said Franklin. “We need to do what’s right.”

The board finally agreed. And Franklin will get a very good night’s sleep tonight.

 

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