Illegal streaming from devices like Kodi could be blocked across the country within months, it is being claimed.
It has emerged that preventing this type of illegal activity is high up on the government’s agenda.
Kodi itself is not illegal, nor is it illegal to sell devices with Kodi pre-installed on them, but many people now sell Kodi devices pre-loaded with third party plug-ins and add-ons that allow users to stream pirated content to their TV .
Selling these “fully loaded” TV set-top devices is a breach of the Copyright, Designs and Patent Act 1988.
The European Court last week ruled that it was illegal to sell a “fully loaded” box which allow people to stream copyright material.
The widespread emergence of Kodi – or certainly those who use it illegally – is now the top priority for rights-holders.
Kieron Sharp, FACT Chief Executive, told the Express: “You’ll be aware of the Premier League case which has led to the blocking of streams by ISPs.
“With these in place what you’ll find is the effectiveness of the add-ons within the boxes is being affected and there could be more in the way of blocks in the future.
“We also know the government is consulting on changes in the law around this type of activity.
“It’s high up on their agenda and I think they realise this is an important issue.”
In a landmark ruling on Wednesday (April 26), the Court of Justice of the European Union ruled that streaming pirated video content is as bad as downloading it.
The court stated that the temporary reproduction of a copyright-protected work, obtained without the consent of the copyright holder, is NOT exempt from the “right of reproduction”.
The law around downloading pirated copies of your favourite TV shows and films has long been clear but the legality of streaming content has been a bit of a grey area.
This was because when you stream something online the file is only temporarily stored on your computer, and the temporary copies have traditionally been exempt from copyright laws.
The right of reproduction states that no person other than the copyright owner can make any reproductions or copies of the work.