Kodi boxes are digital television boxes sold widely in the mainstream market in Amazon and even Tesco. But these Kodi Boxes are the legal versions -- the illegal ones come with add-ons and copyright infringing software that allows for streaming from illegal channels. These "fully-loaded" Kodi Boxes -- the sale and use thereof -- is illegal in the United Kingdom.
Or at least everyone believes so. A landmark case in Hartlepool is guilty as charged for selling Kodi Boxes with modifications and add-ons allowing end-users to stream networks restricted for pay-per-view and other paid programming. Malcolm Mayes sold his customers Kodi Boxes that could watch the Premier Football League without having to pay anything.
According to National Trading Standards Lord Toby Harris, the conviction of Mr Mayes -- having him pay £250,000 for the retail of modified Kodi boxes as a fine for his illegal criminal activities -- should send a clear message that any person or business "selling or operating such a device" are in breach of existing copyright laws in the United Kingdom.
However, the laws apply only to retail and not end-usership, which has many Kodi owners of "illegal Kodis" fearing imprisonment for purchasing the devices. According to the UK Federation Against Copyright Theft (FACT), the device itself is legal even when loaded with illegal applications. Customers are even free of trouble if they bought a "clean" Kodi box and download the illegal applications.