Google tries to make Kodi harder to search for, despite program being legal

Google is trying to make it harder for people to search for Kodi, despite the software being perfectly legal.

The company has removed the term “kodi” from the autocomplete feature of its search engine, because it is “closely associated with copyright infringement”.

As spotted by TorrentFreak, when you type “kod” into Google search, you’ll see suggestions like “kodak black”, “kodiak bear” and “kody brown” pop up, but there’ll be no sign of “kodi”. Similarly, typing in “kodi” brings up “kodiak bear”, “kodiak”, “kodiaq” and “kodiapps”.

Relevant search suggestions only appear when you type in “kodi” and add a space.

Related: Kodi users slapped with Joshua vs Parker streaming warning

“Since 2011, we have been filtering certain terms closely associated with copyright infringement from Google Autocomplete. This action is consistent with that long-standing strategy,” the company told TorrentFreak.

Unsurprisingly, the team behind Kodi isn’t best pleased about the move. “We are surprised and disappointed to discover Kodi has been removed from autocomplete, as Kodi is perfectly legal open source software,” Nathan Betzen the president of the XBMC Foundation said.

“We hope Google will reconsider this decision in the future, or at a minimum limit their removal to search terms where the legality is actually in dispute.”

Do you think the autocomplete block will be temporary? Share your thoughts @TrustedReviews.