Re: Indie is the only way
Without in any way wishing to derail the thread - or hijack it - a lot of this post (and it's one I agree with :-) ) can be applied to the Indie publishing (and to a degree self-publishing) industry. I'd go so far as to say it could apply to just about any activity involving Indie-type producers and marketers - film, music, and (yes :-P) books too.
In essence, the Indie companies have both less to lose (in terms of established market presence and revenue), more to lose (in terms of personal investment and passion), and more to gain (because they have little save the fluff and lint in their pockets, and a bank loan or a KickStarter fund). But that same passion gives them either an ability to take more risk, or the ability to believe in themselves sufficiently to not think of it as risk. And I'm really not sure which of those two approaches I admire more :-).
If the road to hell is paved with good intentions, then the road to mediocrity can be paved with safe repetition and good corporate fiscal care of shareholder risk (none of which is necessarily in itself a Bad Thing(tm)).
But that road is a lot less likely to take you to somewhere no-one has ever been before - good or bad :-).