Fair Use And The Religious Service Exemption Chapter 3 – eBook Excerpt

September 23, 2015

Here is an excerpt from Religious Service Exemption and the Fair Use Doctrine in Chapter 3 of our new eBook “Solve the Puzzle of Copyrights: Six Steps To Learning How To Do Music Right” By Susan Fontaine Godwin. You can download the eBook for FREE here.

“What The Religious Service Exemption Does NOT Cover?

The exemption does not apply to the exclusive rights of the copyright owner to:

  1. Reproduce a copyrighted work
  2. Distribute the work
  3. Make a derivative work
  4. Perform a digital sound recording

The Federal court has observed that the RSE is “a narrow exception to copyright protection,” and that the Copyright Act narrowly limits the privilege accorded religious uses to performance of a literary or musical work…or display of a work. The unauthorized distribution and copying of literary or music “falls outside of that narrow exception to the copyright protection.”


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