Kodi under threat? No, just more rubbish from the UK press
More Kodi “news” from “quality” media outlets the Mirror and the Express this morning, both announcing that Kodi is being targeted by a Swiss security firm who will “shut down” all third-party streaming services.
Let’s take the Mirror article as an example and have a look at each point in turn…
The popular Kodi streaming software allows people to access a vast amount of content using simple TV streaming devices .
But due to a proliferation of illegal streams, the service has made plenty of enemies among copyright holders .
Whilst the first sentence is true, the second sentence is false – Kodi, as we’ve explained before, is simple media management software. It does not supply access to illegal material and thus, has not made any enemies among copyright holders.
Now Swiss digital security firm NAGRA has announced plans to target pirate streams – called addons – that use the Kodi software as a distribution platform.
This is partially true. Nagra have an agreement with IBCAP to supply digital encryption to cable and satellite TV boxes. They have extended that agreement to also consider internet TV streams. More importantly, the Mirror neglected to tell their readers that whilst Nagra are based in Switzerland, both IBCAP and the agreement are based in America only. Also, “pirate streams” are not called addons. Some third-party addons for Kodi access websites of which some, in turn, can access illegal streams. The addons (which are not illegal) and the streams (some of which may be illegal) are completely separate.
The company is part of the Kudelski Group and designs digital encryption systems for a number of products. One of its clients is Netflix, for which it provides content protection.
No. Netflix is not a client of Nagra’s. Netflix and Nagra have an agreement to allow Netflix streams through the Nagra cable and satellite TV encryption software. This is NOT providing content protection.
The new offensive has been mounted in partnership with the International Broadcaster Coalition Against Piracy (IBCAP).
“Developing automated, state-of-the-art tools to detect unauthorised streaming – especially on increasingly popular IPTV set-top boxes and Kodi add-ons – helps ensure we can take swift and decisive action against pirates and maintain the value of the services offered to IBCAP members,” Guitard said.
The important bit here is at the end of the quote: “maintain the value of the services offered to IBCAP members.” Let’s have a quick look at IBCAP.
IBCAP is based in the US and offers services to broadcasters delivering content to US customers. A quick scroll down the front page of their website shows a list of their most esteemed members. Oh wait, hang on, none of these members appear to be American. That’s right. Where are ABC, NBC, CBS, Fox, Time Warner, Comcast, HBO, etc? Erm… they’re not IBCAP customers. In fact, IBCAP doesn’t have any US customers. Their entire business is based around providing services to foreign networks who want to deliver content to the US.
Oh, that’s OK because Nagra is the most popular encryption provider so all the mainstream US networks will already be in the bag. Erm… nope. Not a single one.
Back to the Mirror article for the final juicy scoop.
It’s not yet known how the company plans to tackle the spread of pirated copyrighted content. But it did confirm that it plans to set up a lab dedicated soley to monitoring and cracking unauthorised content via so-called Kodi boxes.
We think they’re talking about the Nagra press release:
As part of the expanded agreement, both IBCAP and NAGRA will implement various strategies focused on combatting the illegitimate use and distribution of international content in the United States. Activities on behalf of IBCAP include the establishment of a monitoring lab to monitor and detect unauthorized use of IBCAP member content and automated systems to monitor set-top boxes, websites, and other streaming platforms. NAGRA will detect servers providing IBCAP member content without authorization, including both linear feeds and VOD content, and take actions to have that content removed.
The important bits here being “the distribution of international content in the United States,” and “unauthorized use of IBCAP member content.” As we’ve already shown, this applies ONLY to content provided to the US from IBCAP members (most of whom seem to be Indian or Asian networks).
- Kodi is not being targeted by NAGRA or IBCAP.
- The agreement between NAGRA and IBCAP covers streaming content in the US only.
- Neither NAGRA nor IBCAP have customers in the main US broadcast spectrum.
- This agreement will have NO impact on websites illegally streaming US, UK or European mainstream content.
We’re not really sure what classifies an article as “Fake News”, whether it’s downright lying, over-exaggerating, or both. We’re pretty sure though, that today’s Mirror (and Express) article qualifies.