Kodi looks set to come under more pressure from Hollywood
Kodi’s rise in popularity shows no signs of stopping and Hollywood appears well aware of the threat it brings to their livelihood.
A recent survey revealed that there’s already over five million homes using players such as Kodi and that number is set to grow at an alarming rate.
Kodi is not illegal and the firm behind the TV Player are actively trying to distance themselves from content that’s being streamed without permission.
However, Kodi can be customised with add-ons and it’s these illegal services which are getting the attention from governments, ISPs and law enforcement agencies.
Now Hollywood is joining the fight against these add-ons saying the problem has become bigger than illegal sites such as The Pirate Bay.
Speaking during a panel session at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, Stan McCoy from the Motion Picture Association, said: “If you think of old-fashioned peer-to-peer piracy as 1.0, and then online illegal streaming websites as 2.0, in the audio-visual sector, in particular, we now face challenge number 3.0, which is what I’ll call the challenge of illegal streaming devices.”
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McCoy acknowledged that many devices in homes, and the Kodi software itself is not illegal, but these players can be used to access copyrighted material without paying.
“The device itself is probably not illegal, the software itself is probably not illegal, the confluence of all three of these is a major category killer for online piracy,” McCoy said.
“In the UK, America, and several other countries, it’s already huge, matching the popularity of legal services such as Spotify.
“The result is a pirate service operating on a truly massive scale.
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“The scale of this kind of piracy has reached epidemic levels similar to major services like Spotify, in markets like the UK, Western Europe and North America.”
Along with companies such as Sky and the Premier League the MPA could now join the crackdown through a variety of measures including legislation, regulation and consumer education.
Kodi-style add-ons are already coming under increased pressure with many closing down in the past few weeks.
With so many people now using Kodi, and the authorities keeping a close eye on its growth, one of the biggest add-ons available has decided to close its doors after 10 years in service.
Navi-X was first set up in 2007 but the team behind the software say they simply can't continue to provide content.
Speaking about why it closed, the Navi-X team said: "Every good thing must come to an end.
"After ten years of successful operation, Navi-X has sadly being discontinued. Navi-X was first released in April 2007, and is the oldest Kodi addon of its kind.
"The main reason why the decision was made to discontinue the Navi-X service is the current legal climate surrounding Kodi.
"In case you aren’t aware, the abundance of preloaded Kodi box sellers has resulted in a lot of heat on Kodi in the United Kingdom and elsewhere.
"It’s unfortunate, because the people who are bringing the heat have nothing to do with the Kodi community anyway, they’re just leeches trying to profit from the hard work of Kodi developers.
"Nevertheless, hosting Navi-X playlists is no longer something we feel comfortable doing due to the potential liability that comes with it."