Kodi BAN – As UK tighten rules on 'pirate' boxes, here's how to spot an illegal stream

Pirate streaming devices, like those powered by the open-source Kodi software, have come under increased scrutiny in the UK.

Earlier this week, Amazon announced plans to take a tough new stance on vendors selling media players that enable customers to access pirate streams and copyright-protected material for free.

Kodi is just one example of the software that can be used to power these “pirate” media players.

Kodi is a neutral, open-source media player software that can be installed on a broad range of devices.

However, this legal media player can be used to run third-party add-ons that enable users to access copyright-protected material for free – uploaded, shared or streamed from other users across the globe. And it’s these ready-made “pirate” streaming devices, which are manufactured by a range of different brands but running Kodi and a slew of third-party add-ons, that are often colloquially dubbed Kodi Boxes.

Amazon now explicitly bans all media players that “promote” or “suggest” the easy facilitation of piracy.

Sellers who violate the policy could have any inventory stored in Amazon fulfilment centres destroyed – with no reimbursement, the company warns.

Some estimates currently place 20 million devices running Kodi in use in the UK at the moment.

Kodi is not the only software that enables these types of “pirate” streaming devices – but it is one of the most well-known.

Last September, the Federation Against Copyright Theft (FACT) branded the use of Kodi software to tune into pirated streams as an “epidemic”.

Meanwhile, the Premier League has launched its “largest ever” crackdown on streaming devices, like the so-called Kodi Boxes that enable football fans to watch matches – including 3pm kick-offs – for free.

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