In case you haven’t heard the news, Gary Larson has finally decided to create an official website and will be publishing new content in 2020. His biggest hesitation in getting on the web has been copyright infringement. It got me thinking about @Jain ’s recent conversation on Fair Use. And about this comment from @mbravo on the concept of a personal digital locker and how it could afford creatives the intellectual property protections that are ephemeral in the current incarnation of the internet.
It revolves around the idea that there are no more "platforms" external to the user. Instead, you own your "data locker", it is yours and yours alone (this is pretty theoretical and of course there will need to be someone to sell you the hardware and the operating system to run that "locker", and there can be and should be competition as long as the resulting "locker" product adheres to a set of common standards and protocols allowing the "lockers" themselves and any external entities to efficiently and seamlessly communicate.
So you don't post to a platform. You post to your own "locker", and if you so desire, then share that post outwards to whichever connections you might have, to friends, media channels, what have you. On whichever conditions you might want to [programmatically] impose, including payment.
And if we are talking about consuming content, here's the thing - commercial entities outside of your "locker" will have to actively compete for your attention and money. You, on the other hand, will have to pay subscription. Not unlike the cable TV or Netflix. You get a "feed" of content that plugs into your "locker" and makes it available for your consumption on whichever conditions - flat rate, pay per view, etc and so on. Services work the same way - you want a feed of real estate information and access to deal registry? You pay, you get it, but the service must conform to the same set of open standards for inter-locker (computer?) communications.