If you want to sell boxes that come pre-loaded with Kodi, you’re going to need to find another somewhere other than Facebook Marketplace.
The world’s largest social network has recently made changes to its commerce policy that prohibit the sale of “Products or items that facilitate or encourage unauthorized access to digital media.” In short, that's anything that runs Kodi.
Facebook is following e-commerce giants eBay and Amazon, both of whom prohibited the sale of Kodi-equipped hardware earlier this year.
User accounts who have Kodi-equipped hardware listed on the site might now have their accounts banned, but it appears as though Facebook won’t be taking any criminal action against anyone hocking streaming hardware.
With great power comes great responsibility
Now, just because you own a Kodi box – a lump term we use to describe any hardware that has the media player built into it – doesn’t mean you’re a pirate or that you intend to use the software to download and/or watch content that isn’t yours. (Though, one of Kodi’s primary functions is to watch channels that you don’t pay for – like perhaps a boxing match that’s only airing on pay-per-view or an out-of-network sports game.)
However while it has a few nefarious features, Kodi has plenty of legal (and fantastic) add-ons – many of which are only there to help facilitate finding content, similar to the Amazon Fire TV or Apple TV.
But what Facebook, eBay and Amazon are trying to curb is something called “plug and play piracy”, i.e. the ability to buy a box online, connect it to your home network and start streaming or downloading content that you don’t have the rights to.
What this means is that the software and the hardware falls into a legal grey area: No you can’t get in trouble for owning a Kodi box. But you might be subject to investigation, at least in the UK.
So what’s a streamer to do?
Your safest bet is to stick to standard streaming device like the ones listed above. But, should you want to go the home-brew route by building a Kodi box of your own, just keep clear of content you don’t own.
- Interested in learning more about Kodi? These are the best Kodi/XBMC boxes