On behalf of the entire ONE LICENSE team, I would like to thank our license holders for a truly unprecedented year in ministry. Your ability to build resilience in your planning, adapt to new ways of reaching your congregations, and expand your technology know-how has been incredible to witness. We are proud of our partnership with you this year and look forward, truly, to health and happiness in the New Year. 

This year, we introduced more new resources than ever before and kept our educational tools adaptive for these changing times. I am proud of our team’s ability to create robust and comprehensive tools for those we serve, as well as provide tangible steps towards using our service successfully. ONE LICENSE exists at the intersection of justice and education, and I’m proud to share the following highlights with you. 

ONE LICENSE Business Highlights from 2020:

  • ONE LICENSE released the new Limited Podcast / Streaming License, designed for organizations that do not post or display lyrics or melody lines nor provide worship aids, but still post their services containing copyrighted music online. 
  • Call & Response, our monthly virtual office hours experience for the ONE LICENSE community, celebrated its one-year anniversary. This web-based discussion serves as an opportunity to connect with your peers, learn from our team, and develop new ways to inspire congregational song. 
  • We embarked on a new partnership with Church Support Group, a trusted partner and reseller in the UK and Ireland! We are thrilled to enable UK, Ireland, and continental Europe congregations to do more with the music they love.
  • Our team expanded to include three new staff members who have already made considerable contributions to our educational efforts. We are glad that you have come to know them, and I appreciate their dedication and commitment to our license holders. 

2020 Statistics:

2.4 million+ services reported

1.3 million+ titles reported

202,000+ music image files and MP3s available

103,366 titles in the song catalog

11,000+ license holders now posting or streaming their services online 

8% of our organizations are connected to group licenses, benefiting from discounted pricing, centralized billing, and accountability in reporting. 

With over 20,000 active licenses, the ONE LICENSE service covers the entirety of North America, Australia, New Zealand, the UK, Ireland, and continental Europe, as well as the rest of the English-speaking church.

Top Ten Posts of 2020:

The year 2020 has been full of creativity and resilience in how we worship. The following articles were ranked among the top most viewed by our license holders. If you missed any of these articles the first time around, be sure to catch up on them now for guidance and best practices.

One of our most popular posts of 2020, this piece guides our license holders through the process of reporting copyrighted music usage for instrumental and choral works under their Podcast / Streaming License. Posting worship services online has become the key way our license holders are engaging their congregations, and reporting usage correctly is incredibly important!

ONE LICENSE understands that things happen and sometimes usage reporting is not a priority. We are here to help provide educational tools for those who may have fallen behind in their reporting. The longer winter months are a great time to prioritize this important justice element — read more for steps you can take to catch up on your music usage reporting.

Many churches are posting their services online for the very first time through YouTube, Facebook, Zoom, etc. But how should you post? What should you include to be sure you are mindful of copyright and licensing practices? Working with our publishing colleagues, we would like to offer the following best practices to keep in mind.

Online worship has become a way to sustain our congregations while social distancing at home, and these services have become an amazing source of creativity for many congregations. This article is filled with ideas and tips to get you started, or inspire you to try something new, with your online services!

Facebook updated their Terms of Service, effective October 1, 2020. With many of our license holders leaning into digital worship, we hope to continue to educate how our services work within the terms of various social media sites. In the rest of this article, we aim to highlight some important elements of those Terms.

In April, ONE LICENSE released a new Limited Podcast / Streaming License. Designed for organizations that do not post or display lyrics or melody lines nor provide worship aids, the Limited Podcast / Streaming License has been our most highly requested offering, and we are proud to provide this service globally. 

With two different types of Podcast / Streaming licenses, ONE LICENSE has permissions that fit the needs of every congregation! This article considers the differences between our Limited Podcast / Streaming License, for organizations that do not post or display lyrics or melody lines, and our Annual License + Podcast / Streaming bundle, for organizations that do reprint lyrics or melody lines.

Our Creative Solutions Webinar addresses many popular questions such as: How do we transition from in-person services to live streaming? Are there any licensing differences between YouTube, Facebook, Zoom, or our organization’s website? This webinar was recorded in March and reflects the current situation at that time, but it is filled with helpful information that is still applicable for many regions. 

Virtual choirs are becoming popular as a great way to share musical worship while keeping social distance. Learn about how our Podcast / Streaming Licenses can help cover your copyright permissions, as well as a few best practices on the technical side of putting a virtual choir together for your worship. 

There are a number of reasons why you might want to add additional users to your account. You might want to add someone to assist with reporting usage or creating worship aids, or you might want to add someone to receive an additional copy of the invoice. See our latest tutorial video on how to add new users to your account.

Special thanks to Sierra Ronning and Katie M. Deaver for their contributions to this article. 

Featured image copyright: Tarion Fernandez.  This image is available for download at www.pexels.com.