Dodgy Kodi add-ons and stream ripping services hampering fight against piracy

Rebecca Barbier
Julho 8, 2017

Stream-ripping, of course, is where you use an app, browser plug-in or website to grab the content of a stream and convert it into a downloadable file.

By comparison, Cyberlocker host and link sites were accessed just under 105,000 times in September 2016, while BitTorrent file-sharing services were accessed 23,567 times by British music fans. Though this particular kind of piracy has been working its way up the music industry's gripe list of late, with the United Kingdom and U.S. record industries launching legal action against stream-ripping site YouTube-MP3.org a year ago. As for how the stream-ripping services make money, advertising was the primary model.

YouTube was found to be the most popular source of content for these sites, used by 75 of the 80 stream-ripping services surveyed.

The research found that 15 percent of all United Kingdom adults aged 16 regularly use a stream-ripping service, with download apps the most popular method of accessing illegal content, followed by ripping sites such as YouTube-MP3.org. The IPO also state that another report shows that "Stream-Ripping" is the new go-to for pirating music, with 15% of internet users being involved in the practice.

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"The long-term health of the UK's cultural and creative sectors is in everyone's best interests, including those of the digital service providers, and a co-ordinated industry and government approach to tackling stream-ripping is essential". Those who claimed to have used a stream-ripping service were significantly more likely to be male, ABC1 social grade, and between the ages of 16 to 34 years.

Reasons given for stream-ripping were: music was already owned by the user in another format (31%); wanting to listen to music offline (26%), or on the move (25%); unaffordability (21%) and feeling that official music content is overpriced (20%).

Meanwhile Ros Lynch, Copyright & IP Enforcement Director at the IPO, added: "It's great that legal streaming sites continue to be a hugely popular choice for consumers".

In response, the IPO is working closely with industry to help tackle the issue of illegal TV streaming devices and a number of popular illicit software extensions allowing access to infringing content have vanished in recent weeks.

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