info_outline Cloud Hymnal FAQ

What is the purpose and goal of the Cloud Hymnal website?

The Cloud Hymnal mission is to promote active participation in worship experiences through its powerful and easy to use tools that allow church communities to create and share liturgies, music, readings, and prayers.

How can I use the Cloud Hymnal website and its materials?

The Cloud Hymnal website can revolutionize how your church community worships. It can be used to curate and develop weekly service liturgies, rehearsals, Bible studies, or other occasions for your choir or church community. Cloud Hymnal can replace the traditional hymnbook by being projected at your place of worship or viewed on mobile devices. You may also export and print Cloud Hymnal content for use in your community’s worship. Please see the Cloud Hymnal terms of use for further details on permitted uses: https://cloudhymnal.org/terms.

What am I not permitted to do with the Cloud Hymnal website and its materials?

The Cloud Hymnal website and all materials and exported content are intended only for non-commercial use by you and your community in furtherance of your worship. Please see the Cloud Hymnal terms of use for details: https://cloudhymnal.org/terms.

I would like to use the Cloud Hymnal website and/or its exported content and materials but am not sure whether my proposed use is permitted under Cloud Hymnal’s terms.

Please contact us at richard@cloudhymnal.org to discuss.

I want to upload music or a reading to the Shared Library, but I am not the composer or author. How can I tell if I have a right to share the music or reading through Cloud Hymnal?

Under US copyright law, if you are not the author or composer of a work (e.g., music, readings), you are only allowed to upload a work if (1) it is old enough that its copyright has expired and it is in the public domain; or (2) the author of the work has granted a license to share.

It can be hard to tell if something is copyrighted or not. Therefore, when in doubt, assume the work is subject to copyright.

In any event, here are useful guidelines.

  1. If a version of sheet music or a literary work was published prior to 1923, such as Schubert’s Ave Maria, then it is in the Public Domain. These may be used and uploaded. Be aware, however, that copyrights may still be extant in sheet music for a song that otherwise would be in the public domain, if the sheet music was scored or a specific arrangement created after 1923.
  2. In some cases, an individual author may create a new arrangement to an older work that is in the public domain, such as Ave Maria. In this case, while the underlying core musical components of the song is in the public domain, the author has limited copyright specifically in the new creative aspects of his or her arrangement. Thus, you should not use their specific arrangement without permission from the author.
  3. If a work has a copyright notice on it, this means that someone is claiming some authorship rights in some aspect of the work. Accordingly, you should assume it is protected by copyright and you should not upload the work without permission from the author. (The exception being works with a copyright notice prior to 1923).

I am the copyright owner of music or readings that someone else has uploaded to Cloud Hymnal without my permission. How do I report this?

You may send an email to Cloud Hymnal’s Digital Millenium Copyright Act (“DMCA”) agent with the necessary information for the copyright complaint to be reviewed. Please provide the below information to richard@cloudhymnal.org:

  1. Your contact information, including your name and either email address, mailing address, or telephone number;
  2. A brief description of the work or works that you believe is being infringed;
  3. The specific location (URL) of the allegedly infringing content on the Website;
  4. A statement affirming that you “have a good faith belief that the use of the material in the manner complained of is not authorized by the copyright owner, its agent, or the law”;
  5. A statement affirming that the information in this notification is accurate, and under penalty of perjury, you are the owner, or an agent authorized to act on behalf of the owner, of an exclusive right that is allegedly infringed.
  6. Your signature (physical or electronic).

For more information on the DMCA, see copyright.gov/title17/AppendixB.pdf and copyright.gov/title17/92chap5.html#512.

Asserting that content infringes your rights is a legal claim and knowingly making misrepresentations of infringement can result in liability under the DMCA. If you are not sure if the material is infringing, we recommend consulting an attorney prior to submitting a notice. Cloud Hymnal will review and respond to complete notifications expeditiously.

I received a notice from Cloud Hymnal informing me that content that I uploaded was removed due to a copyright takedown notice. I believe the takedown was erroneous. Can I have the content reinstated?

If you have a good faith belief that your uploaded material was removed in error, you may send a counter notice to richard@cloudhymnal.org, including the following required information:

  1. Your physical or electronic signature.
  2. Identification of the material that has been removed or to which access has been disabled and the location at which the material appeared before it was removed or access to it was disabled.
  3. A statement under penalty of perjury that you have a good faith belief that the material was removed or disabled as a result of mistake or misidentification of the material to be removed or disabled.
  4. Your name, address, and telephone number, and a statement that you consents to the jurisdiction of Federal District Court for the judicial district in which the address is located, or if your address is outside of the United States, for any judicial district in which the service provider may be found, and that you will accept service of process from the person who provided notification under subsection or an agent of such person.

Asserting that your content is non-infringing (either due to issues of ownership or a fair use) is a legal claim. If you are not sure if the material is infringing, we recommend consulting an attorney prior to submitting a counter notice. Upon filing a counter notice, Cloud Hymnal will notify the party who filed the underlying complaint alleging that the material was infringing and send a copy of the counter notice.

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