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New Zealand's longest-running online daily news and commentary publication, now in its 23rd year. The opinion pieces presented here are not purported to be fact but reasonable effort is made to ensure accuracy.

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How Kodi will end online piracy

28 November 2017

I like a good movie as much as the next man (or woman).

In fact, we have several book-cases filled with DVD and Bluray disks of our favourites, such as Demolition Man, the Die Hard movies, The Matrix, Stargate, all the Star Trek movies and series, etc.

Over several decades, we have spent a small fortune on these disks and we probably have more than the local DVD rental library (now) has.

But, to be honest, I find these disks to be annoying and cumbersome so most of the time, when I want to watch a movie that we have in the library, I just stream it online instead.

OMG! Am I breaking copyright law?

Well I'm sure the studios that created those movies will give an emphatic "yes" answer to that question.

That's right, even though we have multiple copies of some movies (ie: a DVD copy, another copy as part of a "set" and a Bluray copy purchased because it's HD), the act of streaming the very same movie from some dropbox on the Net could very well get me into big trouble.

What the hell?

This is one of the reasons that I have no sympathy for the movie studios and their wailing bitches about the rapid growth of people using software such as Kodi with third-party plug-ins to gain access to a wealthy of copyrighted material -- without the permission of or payment to the copyright owners.

Another reason I'm not crying a river of tears for them is the outrageous amount of money that is paid to the lead actors, directors and producers of these movies.

Seriously, what actor is *really* worth tens of millions of dollars for a few short months work? This is obscene!

I think Kodi boxes are a good thing. Their disruptive influence might bring some sanity to an industry that has been rorting the public for decades.

Fair enough that a good day's work deserves a good day's pay but the pay levels of some of those bitching most about the effect of technology is simply beyond reason and they are obviously scared as hell that they're seeing the end of their ability to demand such amounts for their services.

I see that Stuff is carrying yet another story on Kodi this morning and we're all supposed to feel sorry for the movie industry as a result.

If we look at how the recording industry (eventually) dealt with the issue of piracy then it's easy to see that the same could happen for movies and TV content.

I'm talking about the likes of Apple Music, Spotify and the like.

For one small monthly subscription fee, you can gain access to just about every piece of music ever published -- on demand and in pretty good quality.

It is now time for the movie/TV equivalent of these services.

Oh, hang on... we already have it... it's called Kodi with a suitable 3rd-party plug-in.

This setup has proven that there's a huge market for such a service so if the movie and TV studios don't get their act together and embrace a Spotify model for their content then they will simply be huge losers.

I think we all recall when the music industry thought it could prosecute its way out of the piracy problem don't we? Did that work for them? Of course not.

The movie/TV industry has to wake up to the future and that future is the same model for their content.

What's that? It will cause a huge drop in revenues and profits?

Tough shirt!

Maybe you should reconsider how much you're paying yourselves and adjust that to restore your profit margins.

Yay for Kodi and 3rd-party plug-ins. This may be the technology that finally brings the movie/TV industries down to ground and results in the virtual demise of piracy online.

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