I think if we want something that will replace centralized services it needs to be more than a file format though. We need embeddable code standards, players with good features, analytics tools, etc etc. All of those could be built in a distributed, open, and sharable way. Some of them could even be paid tools!
Yes yes yes yes yes. We pay for it anyway with our advertising data and content.
I do think that we could have better strategies for sharing the burden of data storage. Torrent and the like are one way to approach it.
This is funny, but there’s a nugget of truth. If we make art that becomes commercially successful, why shouldn’t we be able to make a living from it, or have it contribute to our economic abilities? Having a massive hit should be a good thing, not a burden. Soundcloud certainly doesn’t help me in this way… Bandcamp is a little better. But really… if we’re talking about success as a possible problem because the art makes less money than it costs to host on the web we have a big issue.