RE: Web2 vs Web3 and the scaling bottleneck no one on Hive is talking about.
I don't see this issue corrected by collecting fees on access by full node operators. Do you think Google will pay to rank our pages? This is an example of indirect outside use of full nodes, I believe. This would hurt Hive a lot, in many ways.
But I agree there is a problem and that some witnesses do the absolute minimum to keep their position while others may deserve better ranking and don't get the necessary votes.
The solution is still in the governance and better popularizing what each of the top witnesses are doing (or not doing), and allowing the community to vote in or out of Top 20 those who they deem worth it. The vote decay should also help to some extent with this.
We should also keep in mind it's not all about the full node, but it is a big piece that can propel a witness higher in the ranking. Some are contributing in other ways. You mentioned Blocktrades, the lead dev team for the core. Although they have full nodes as well. And even a permanent test net.