In recent months, the media playing software Kodi has attracted a surge of attentionand new users. You'd think this would be something the folks who created Kodi would be thrilled about, but that's not the case.
"Two years ago we were just another software and then the explosion happened," Nathan Betzen, the president of the XBMC Foundation, which administers the Kodi project, told me. "People assumed it was awesome for us but it was not. When the reason you're blowing up is because third-party add-ons help people pirate, you get all kinds of phone calls and emails."
Kodi attracted newfound popularity after numerous shady dealers began selling Kodi-equipped streaming boxes souped-up with third-party plugins that allow people to stream pirated TV and movies. This also caused Kodi and adjacent plugin libraries to draw unwanted ire from traditional TV providers. This reached an apex last month when these providers, such as Dish Network and Canada's Bell network, launched lawsuits against the third-party plugin libraries. But according to the Electronic Frontier Foundation, these lawsuits have less to do with copyrights, and more to do with stomping out any cable-cutting competition to the status quo.