As anyone who has ever tried to distribute a large amount of data over the Internet knows, bandwidth while being plentiful is not really all that cheap. Pricing for outgoing bandwidth can vary considerably, but is never less than about 25 cents per GigaByte (GB), and can be as high as eight dollars!
For the small, independent musician, film maker or software publisher, distribution of their materials can be the most expensive part of their business. This is particularly problematic if the material being distributed is not being paid for, such as in the case of Open Source software, or free promotional content from an artist.
Centralized distribution methods on the Internet also have the problem of massive congestion when new, highly sought material becomes available. For example, whenever a new Linux Kernel becomes available at Kernel.org, the site’s 1 Gigabit (Gb) pipe quickly becomes saturated and downloads can take hours. And forget it when a new Fedora Core is released — downloads of the ISOs can take days, if you are even able to connect.