Nice column, Seb.
And I'm only a "doomsayer" because there are too many pie-in-the-sky would-be creators out there, and there are few people willing to tell them the truth.
I think Indy's are going to get a big boost here, once they switch over to Haven distribution. Eventually, Haven is going to raise their standards and go the way of Diamond, but that day is a few years in coming. They get an exclusive contract or two with a company like Devil's Due or Dynamite, and you'll start to see the playing field change.
I also suspect there will be more superhero webcomics in the near future. I hope to bring a couple of projects to that table before the end of the year. Like I said in B&N, the floodgates of crap will be opened.
The conventional wisdom says that Marvel/DC rule the superhero roost, but I think that's going to change. As long as they continue to price themselves out of buyability, comic readers are going to look for replacements. A webcomic that does supers and then collects them for sale will be the place to go. I'm thinking three years. In five, look for Marvel/DC to start offering more and more comics on the web, and then collecting them to sell (again). However, I think they'll have loosened the kung-fu grip they have on the superhero market by that time, and more superhero universes will rise.
The economic downturn will help the superhero genre in particular and creators in general in the long-term. We just have to ride it out.
Again, good column.