There seems to be a bit of consternation lately over the present and future of running silly distances. Road folks want more money and trail folks seem to want less. Same for organization, corporate involvement, etc.
This is not an accurate explanation or take on the issue but it is, I think, sufficient.
Whatever you want running to be in the future, it will be. Run as fast or as slow as you want to on whatever terrain you like against tens or tens of thousands of people. Get a t-shirt or don't. Give a shit about the front of the pack, or hell, try to be a part of it. Or not. Be what you want. Do what you want. Tell your own story.