How is that a choir can sing someone else’s music, but a youtuber can’t play certain music in their videos?

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What do the laws(if any) say about this? And on what scale. Is it legal for a member of church to sing a song to the congregation, or a high school student?

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The legal difference is you cannot use someone else’s content. You are always able to sing something, or play on an instrument, what ever you like because at that point you are creating the content. But you can’t use someone else’s, already created, content without their permission

The right to perform or record a song written by someone else, the right to play a recording of a song in public, and the right to “sync” (the legal term) a song recording to video or film are all treated separately legally.

For the first one, you have to pay the people who own the publishing rights to the actual *song* (lyrics and/or melody). Usually a choir would buy the official sheet music to a song. Also, choirs often perform traditional songs or classical music that isnt covered by copyright.

I posted a question related to law once and the mods removed it and told me to post elsewhere. Not sure why they are letting this stay up.

Your church has a CCLI license. Older hymns are public domain but most of the songs they play fall under the CCLI.

If they do it correctly you should see a number under the words on the last page of verses on the screen if they show the lyrics. Or it might be on the title.

Song books will have a license as well, so even if they have a CCLI they can’t just xerox the song books or hymnals.