I was doing an interview the other day and was asked about the future of gold farming. Without thinking too hard (because there's good evidence), I responded that I thought its future was not very bright. While the virtual goods market seems as hot as ever, it also has been internalized by experience providers. This stands to reason - why let 3rd parties monetize the eyeballs you've captured?
The conversation turned to powerleveling and I stopped to think about it - equally dim future there? I think so. I've been in the resurgent Lord of the Rings Online quite a bit lately, and the skirmish system seems well-designed as an internal PL system. (I understand WoW has something similar, instant dungeons.) The main forces driving the powerleveling market are the need of experienced players to level up alternate characters. Once you've gone through the geographic content a few times, exploring's not a thrill any more, and it becomes a grind. Riding switchback alley from Ost Guruth to Rivendell for the umpteenth time - bleh. Enter the Skirmish. If you just need to kill stuff and gain XP, you cut out the traveling. Press ctrl-J and pow, there you are, solo if necessary, facing a challenging 45-minute adventure with good XP and loot rewards.
On the whole it seems that the industry has worked on co-opting and internalizing 3rd party services. This seems to be good for the gaming experience. There's no gold spam in LOTRO, and my server (Landroval) has a very active RP community with little evidence of griefing between them and the powergamers.