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Kodi upset on the cards as Premier League wins shock court order to tackle pirate streaming

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The Premier League has obtained a court order that allows it to seek retribution against pirates who broadcast copyright material through Kodi-based set-top boxes in a "precise manner". Has the whistle finally blown on dodgy streaming in the UK?

The Kodi software, often installed on low-powered, low-cost set-top boxes, has made it much easier to watch games without paying Sky or BT Sport subscription fees – bad news for traditional broadcasters, basically.

Until now, the English Premier League (EPL) had only been able to block individual streams, barely putting a dent in the pirates before new ones crop up. But the recent court victory gives the Premier League the power to have computer servers providing the streams blocked directly by ISPs.

Related: Could buying a Kodi box soon be illegal?

A Premier League spokesperson, via the BBC, said: "For the first time this will enable the Premier League to disrupt and prevent the illegal streaming of our matches via IPTV, so-called Kodi, boxes.”

The news comes just days after a man was given a suspended prison sentence and a £250,000 fine for selling 'fully loaded' Kodi boxes to pubs around the UK.

Malcolm Mayes, 65, sold the boxes for £1,000 after advertising them in national magazines as "100% legal.”

Back in September, the Federation Against Copyright Theft (FACT) described the problem as an “epidemic.”

Meanwhile, in February, five people in the UK were arrested on suspicion of selling the set-top boxes to customers around the nation.

Will this ruling spell the end for football streaming through Kodi? Or will the pirates always find a way? Share your thoughts below.

Nick Wootton

March 13, 2017, 12:37 pm

I wish you'd be more accurate in your coverage of Kodi. It has not and does not condone piracy - see their about page here - https://kodi.tv/about/

Just because some third-party add-ons are bundled with the "low-powered, low-cost set-top boxes" does not mean that Kodi is in anyway to blame. They make a piece of software for the consumption of media that supports additional functionality via third-party extensions. If people choose to abuse these extensions that is NOT the fault of Kodi.

You can get software for a PC that enables the same type of streams. The same "low-powered, low-cost set-top boxes" can run Android and often do, yet I don't see anyone blaming Android or WIndows for these problems.

The media - directly or indirectly - is demonising a piece of software that it shouldn't. I'm sure if it was Windows or Android, legal challenges would be taken by the respective owners to ensure that an appropriate clarification is made, but because Kodi is FOSS, it doesn't have the money and legal weight to defend itself.

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