Anti-Piracy Groups Take on Kodi ‘Epidemic’

Kodi is a highly-popular piece of software offered at zero cost which couples together various forms of entertainment in a streamlined user-interface. Many Android streaming boxes are designed with Kodi is mind and pre-install the application to provide users with the best possible experience. The software has caused some controversy among groups representing the rights of intellectual property holders because it’s possible to enable third-party add-ons as a way of accessing illegal streams. This includes films, TV shows and even allows you to watch expensive services like Sky Sports. The anti-piracy organisation, FACT which stands for the Federation Against Copyright Theft claims Kodi’s ability to access content for free is:

“an emerging threat to the audiovisual industry.”

Kieron Sharp, director general of Fact told the BBC:

“This is becoming an epidemic,”

Mr Sharp also added:

“If you are not paying for Sky, BT or one of the pay-TV providers for your subscription channels, you are clearly in possession of an illegal box.”

A spokesperson for the UK government’s Intellectual property office (IPO) echoed FACT’s comments and said:

“We are aware that set-top boxes, while perfectly legal in their own right, are frequently adapted by criminals to illegally receive TV channels protected by intellectual property rights,” 

“The government is working with its partners in industry and with police forces across the country to target criminals looking to profit from this activity.”

“We are also working closely with our international partners to target the cross-border infrastructure that underpins illegal streaming.”

While it’s certainly true a portion of users employ the Kodi application to pirate content, many enjoy the application through legitimate means. Not only that, it’s questionable if you can blame the developers for how people use their software, especially when the illegal access is done through a third-party add-on.

Are you a fan or Kodi?

John Williamson

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