"[T]he tabletop RPG market is enduring a kind of death. I think it is transforming into something that isn't a viable commercial business for more than a handful of people [like model trains]... Kids stopped playing with trains, and the businesses that remained dedicated to hobbyists who got more disposable income as they grew up, until the price of the hobby was out of reach of anyone except those older hobbyists. Eventually, it became a high-end hobby with very expensive products, sold to an ever-decreasing number of hobbyists. As those folks die, the hobby shrinks. That is what is happening to the tabletop RPG business."
Where do they wheel these people out from? And doesn't it sound to you like the last bleatings of the CEO of Netscape, declaring that the web browser is dead, before the men in white coats coax him out to the back alley to put him out of his misery?
I'm sure you can read between the lines, just as I can: the big RPG companies like Wizards of the Coast and White Wolf are dying. They got fat and bloated and have been mostly engaged in the production of horse manure for the past 10 years. QED: tabletop RPGs are dying - the comfortable myth high-ups in those companies can tell themselves rather than face the ugly truth, which is that they're nothing like as innovative or interesting as they should be. Cognitive dissonance is a funny thing.
Tabletop RPGs are in fact in rude health again. They've undergone some lean times, but they've emerged from their long semi-hibernation bleary-eyed and pale but with a feriocious hunger. This is thanks in no small part to the internet and blogosphere. Gamers all over the world can now connect with each other instantly, create endless new material, publish entirely new game lines to sell to each other or even give away for free, innovate and create beyond anything in their wildest dreams 10 years ago, and they're doing it in huge numbers. If you're a "former VP of RPGs at Wizards and marketing guru at White Wolf/CCP" I'm sure you'd also take the view that this represented the death of tabletop RPGs, because none of it results in a single penny being forked over to either Wizards or White Wolf. But you're not. So I think you take the same view as I do - things are looking up.