Hey, Amazon, Kodi Is Not Piracy!

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Written by Ant Pruitt

Amazon denies Kodi access to its app store because it’s “facilitating piracy.” But that’s ridiculous. Ant Pruitt explains why.

aNewDomain — Recently Amazon slapped popular media server software Kodi right out of its app store. Why? Because it determined the app can be used to “facilitate piracy.” What?

Uh, no Amazon. You are in the wrong. Kodi, formerly known as XBMC, is a media center software package.

If you don’t know what that is, allow me to break it down for you, Amazon. This type of software package is installed on the user’s computer of choice inside their home network. Once the server software is installed on a central computer, other computers and mobile devices can connect to the server on the home network. This allows for multimedia files to be visible and streamed on multiple computers or mobile devices in the home, rather than just the main computer.

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With set-top boxes and streaming sticks becoming more popular, software such as Kodi has become even more useful and convenient. Ideally, the set-top box or streaming sticks have capabilities to see the media center server on the network via protocols like DLNA.

Once identified as a safe server, the set-top box may stream the server’s content to the home television. Again, the media center software allows for any multimedia on the main computer to be viewed on another device. It’s brilliant and beautiful to see in action.

So how is it piracy?

Amazon says Kodi “facilitates” piracy. Those were careful words chosen by Amazon. Piracy is the act of consumers taking licensed content and unlawfully claiming ownership of the content by means of copying, versus actually paying the retail price. If you borrow a movie from a friend or family member and copy that content to your personal library, then you’re pirating. You’re acting in unauthorized use of someone else’s property.

Is pirating something you do because you have Kodi installed? No. You can pirate no matter what sort of media server you are using, Kodi simply allows you to stream content — any content — to multiple devices within your home. Does Kodi make streaming pirated content easy?  Yes. That’s fine and well, but you know what else is possible with Kodi? Buying and streaming your content legally!

Amazon totally missed the boat based on its “facilitates” logic. At this rate, Plex should be removed from the Amazon app store, too. Plex is an awesome media server package that I’ve been using for many years. I use it everyday! What’s the difference between Plex and Kodi? Nothing, really. At the core, they’re both just media server packages. What’s next? Will Amazon give AllCast the boot?

I think this was an ignorant move from Amazon. Claiming that this app will facilitate piracy is bogus. If that’s the case, Amazon should get rid of all other media server related software. At least be consistent. Don’t worry, though. Those that think Amazon’s actions were uncalled for can get the Kodi APK by other means. And no, that’s not piracy, either.

For aNewDomain, I’m .

All images: Screenshots by Ant Pruitt courtesy of Kodi

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