Exploring the Sustainability of Credit-Incentivized Peer-to-Peer Content Distribution

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Executive Summary

Credit-based incentives were proposed to incite peer contributions in P2P content distribution systems. Their effectiveness was extensively analyzed from a game theory perspective. Little attention however has been paid to a potential threat to such systems - the possible condensation of credits in a small number of peers over time. Credits condensation puts system sustainability on the line: many peers gradually run out of credits and cannot keep up a decent download rate. The authors study the sustainability of credit-based P2P systems running for a long period of time. They first introduce a new queuing network based model for credit circulation in a P2P content trading market.

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