From: Rebecca Goldsmith
Subject: RE: Common Worship copyright enquiry
Date: 8 November 2010 14:58:12 GMT
To: Jonathan Hagger
My sincere apologies for the lengthy delay. Unfortunately, I am also responsible for part of the production of the Church of England Year Book, as well as Church House copyright. With General Synod elections this year, completing the Year Book became priority to the detriment of my other work. Again, my apologies.
We are grateful for your willingness to seek permission. I hope you will allow me the opportunity to explain the issue from a CH perspective. Church House Publishing controls the rights to Common Worship material, which we try and make available for Church and congregational use as easily as possible. However, in order to protect the work of the Archbishops' Council publishing and in order to fund the future publishing work of the Archbishops' Council, we charge people to quote from and reuse our material in other publications. Usually, I may stress, in academic settings. However, we do limit the amount of material that people can reuse as we feel we already do our utmost to make our material available under our own terms. Therefore, we feel to allow you to produce material everyday at no cost would undermine the precedent we set with our other clients.
Furthermore, as I am sure you are aware, we do have a daily prayer feed which we allow people to use on their own websites. (http://www.cofe.anglican.org/worship/dailyprayer/ ) As part of this work, we feel we are able to grant you permission to broadcast audio files of Common Worship material, at no cost, as we recognize that - although virtual - this online community constitutes your congregational use. However, as we already produce an online feed of daily prayer we do not feel we can grant you permission to republish this textual material online everyday. Furthermore, not all material published in Common Worship is owned by the Archbishops' Council. As you will see from the Acknowledgment section, a substantial amount of CW material is owned by third parties and as such we are not in a position to grant unfettered access to publish material daily online.
We are happy to support you where possible, and if you would like to publish audio files we are happy to grant non-exclusive permission for this use. We would also encourage you to use the daily prayer feed as supplied if you feel this would be helpful. If you do wish to publish further collects, etc, which are not included in daily prayer sporadically or on special occasions, I am sure we can arrange permission for that as and when.
I am sorry for any disappointment this causes but I hope you can understand that we cannot grant unfettered access to some whilst charging and restricting others.
COMMENT: In many ways the above is extremely fair and accommodating. But in many ways it is also very wrong indeed. The liturgy of the Church is a church project, not the work of somebody, for example the prayer writer, David Adam, who is publishing his work partly to make money for himself (something, considering the meagre wages Church of England priests receive I thoroughly endorse) . The Church says that its liturgy is a mission tool, and I think this can truly be the case. The Church also pays lip service to the claim that the Internet should be a place for Christian mission. Surely, they could come up with a protocol that is a lot more helpful to mission than the above. I have to pay for the right to podcast music. Couldn't a reasonably priced licence be made available to allow the posting of text "belonging" to the church?