Copyright issues & podcasts
I asked Fred this question via email at his blog, and he said to come on over here and ask the question, which is a really good idea, duh! I just thought he could give me a quick answer.
We want to record our worship services and offer them as podcasts on the church web site. Is it legal to make these recordings downloadable, or can we simply allow them to be streamed without download capability?
It would be legal to stream them WITH correct permissions in place. Download, not at all. You should look into broadcast licenses or streaming licenses I think they're called...can't remember, but there is a great thread on this very topic somewhere on the forums, you should be able to find with a little searching.
Most churches that I know simply edit out the music portion of their service (unless they're using original music) and offer the messages as their podcast.
Thanks for the reply. I suspected that copyright laws would protect even church performances, but I wasn't sure. So the only way to stream a video or audio of a live praise and worship performance is to get permission from the copyright owners, yes?
Guess we'll just have to start writing our own praise and worship music!
CCLI recently added a streaming license option that's relatively inexpensive: see http://streaming.ccli.com/ for the details.