In years past, I (and many others) had painted a rosy picture of a bright future for unsigned musicians. Sadly, the outlook is looking bleaker than I had imagined. A while back, I was savagely attacked by trolls on another website for sharing my optimistic views, which in turn led to my self-induced exile. Turns out the trolls may have been partially right, although I still maintain they could have been nicer about it. Seriously, there is simply no justification for acting like a troll. (I apologize if I offended any trolls with that last statement.)
It is also quite probable that the Quietus piece goes too far the opposite direction, although the author makes some great points. I hope the reality is somewhere in between the two viewpoints.
James Marshall Crotty of Forbes online wrote an analysis of the original Quietus post today, and made an interesting point: "One must also remember that for most of music history, musicians, en masse, made very little money. There was an anomaly in the sixties that convinced musicians and labels that they could all get rich. Not true. Never was true."
Maybe there is a glimmer of hope after all.