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The Premier League has won a major victory in its battle against illegal streams of football matches. It has obtained a court order that lets it seek retribution against pirates who broadcast copyrighted material through Kodi-based set-top boxes in a "precise manner".

Kodi is software that makes it very easy to find and watch illegal livestreams of Premier League matches without shelling out for Sky Sports or BT Sport. It's often installed on low-powered, cheap set-top boxes.

It's always been illegal, but until this court order, the English Premier League (EPL) had had its hands tied somewhat in dealing with the problem. It could only block individual streams, which meant the minute it took one out of action, another would spring up in its place, like playing whack-a-mole.

This new court order, however, gives the EPL the power to have computer servers providing the streams blocked directly by internet service providers (ISPs).

In other words, it tackles the problem at source.

A Premier League spokesperson told the BBC: "For the first time this will enable the Premier League to disrupt and prevent the illegal streaming of our matches via IPTV, so-called Kodi, boxes."

Recently, one man was given a suspended prison sentence and fined £250,000 for selling 'fully loaded' Kodi boxes in pubs around the UK. Malcolm Mayes, 65, sold the boxes for £1,000 each after advertising them in magazines as "100 per cent legal".

In September, the Federation Against Copyright Theft (FACT) described the problem of Kodi boxes as an epidemic.



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