Re: Does he actually *want* to remove copyright?
It's not my model, and I'm not advocating any particular system personally, but you're kind of missing a few obvious points, so I'll bother with a very late reply.
"Maybe my costs are different. Maybe I sell to a smaller but more affluent market. If it costs a lot to get an orchestra together but classical music lovers are more affluent on average, how would I be shoe-horned into a "X plays = Y pennies" model? If I make a specialist film that is not much interest to most, but highly valued by a certain group, who are you to say I can't sell to them directly?"
Who says you can't? Not having copyright protection doesn't mean that you can't sell the product directly. Many artists already practically give away digital downloads of their works, but sell premium versions on vinyl or limited edition CD, with extras. Seems to work pretty well for them.
"Customer pays for what they want is vastly simpler than any centralized system"
Simple maybe, but look at the context here. Pirate Bay users aren't paying for what they want. It remains to be seen if someone can assemble the technical and legal machinery to put the piracy genie back in its bottle, but right now it's not looking good. If piracy can't be beaten, then a system that assures artists of some remuneration if they produce decent work is surely better than what they're earning from Pirate Bay users.
"And if your model is an alternative to copyright, how invasive would you have to be to actually guess what people are listening to / watching?"
Ridiculous argument. If downloading is legal, there's no trouble monitoring what gets downloaded, it's no different than the way download charts are assembled now. And a large percentage of people aren't shy about sharing what they watch or listen via social media; you can go to trakt.tv right now and see all the tv shows and movies trakt users, have watched in recent times, and their ratings, automatically scrobbled from their HTPCs and media players. Go look.