Korea Display System : Let's get real about Kodi and "free TV"
Whether you know it or not, you've heard about
Even so, here's a refresher: Though Kodi, itself, is well-intentioned software, it's marketed by bad actors not associated with the company as the cord-cutter's free-for-all magic content machine.
Here's where the magic happens: Because the
Thus, an entire industry has emerged around folding the bad in with the good, and simplifying the process of streaming anything you want -- live sports, movies still in theaters, pay-per-view extras -- free of charge.
There are, for instance, a number of Android box makers who sell devices that merge
Then, there are your average Joes and Janes; our neighbors and acquaintances who buy dozens of off-the-shelf Amazon Fire TV sticks, add
"We keep a list of who (the good guys) are," said
You can buy these infringing set-top boxes on Amazon, eBay and
Roughly 6 percent of all households in
Before you, too, get sucked in by the proposition of free everything, I implore you to think about what you're doing. I don't mean to suggest that you should feel sorry for the world's biggest entertainment brands who are, no doubt, losing money on work that cost millions to produce. Rather, it's a matter of right versus wrong, and even kindergartners know it's wrong to steal.
This is a subject that hits close to home.
When I met my husband, he was an active copyright infringer, using an Amazon Fire TV stick that he bought from a friend. It came pre-loaded with
No one was technically doing anything illegal -- at least based on existing copyright laws, as courts have yet to determine where fault, or the actual act of copying a copyrighted file, takes place. But the players here are all messing around in a legal gray area.
As it stands, my husband's old jimmy-rigged Fire TV stick has been replaced with a pair of standard Chromecast devices. We pay for YouTube TV, Netflix and Amazon Video (by way of Prime). And I can sleep at night knowing that we are not online pirates. My husband's moral compass points in a slightly different direction, but he knows better than to challenge me on this subject.
The friend, meanwhile, is no longer in the picture. Even if he's still up to the same antics, he's not at risk of any repercussions, making this is a morality tale with an anticlimactic ending.
Maybe things will change.
"When those customers use TickBox TV ... they have nearly instantaneous access to multiple sources that stream plaintiffs' copyrighted works without authorization," the suit states.
And, for its part, the
"But that doesn't really mean anything," Betzen admitted. "If you go to a local fair, there's always somebody selling one of these boxes for
That leaves it up to us to decide what acceptable streaming behavior looks like in our homes. Whatever your choice, you can't claim innocent, or ignorance, anymore.
To discuss all things streaming TV, join our Facebook group, SDUT cord-cutters.
[email protected] (619) 293-1840 Twitter: @jbruin
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