If you’re able to convince a group of people to pay you to tell them something, they will probably believe it. This was the fundamental principle of the publishing industry’s marketing plan. Yet since the quality of the content contained within this game plan has been disqualified, the so-called traditional publishing industry’s business model is now missing a foundation to build upon.
Yet the revolutionary flood which started out as simply “THE INTERNET” has hardly even begun.
Let’s unpack this with a more detailed look at this thing many people refer to as “audience”. From prehistoric times, when people shared stories while seated in circles around a campfire, audiences were a very tightly knit social phenomenon. Even a few decades ago, dinners with high-priced plates (or seats or whatever) were not a rarity. Audience implicitly had a ticket price. Not always, of course — recieving propaganda through a religious service is normally free and open to (almost) anyone. Yet I do feel that the explicit definition of audience does sort of require there to be a boundary between what is audience versus what isn’t audience. The walls of such “walled gardens” need not be especially obvious or clear, but the whole notion of the term “audience” would seem rather absurd if it were not exclusive.
Yet again, that is exactly what THE INTERNET is. Online, all costs are more or less negligable. Esther Dyson wrote an excellent article about this a long time ago. 
I myself have no doubt whatsover: All irrational media will sink, only rational media will survive. I am also willing to wager that graphical icons — insofar as they are regulated by intellectual property laws — belong in the irrational media camp. 
Now that the notion of exclusive audiences have become superfluous, we now live in an environment in which truly “the whole world is watching” — and increasingly, the whole world will be selecting rational media. More and more, the whole world will increasingly publish. Anyone willing to bet that illiteracy is long for the world will ultimately fail. Only the fittest will survive, so literate and rational will become a very big win-win.