Something else also is happening that's dovetailing in with the Panda updates and many publishers' livelihoods being upended, something I've been noticing among bloggers I read who've been working on their blogs for a few years now.
Quite a few, I've noticed, are beginning to experience burnout. They've either cut back on their posting/updating of their sites, hired freelancers to share the workload, or have begun to quit their blogs altogether and return to the 9-to-5 working world. I think it's partly a sign that, now that we're several years in to this whole thing of having AdSense and other ad networks that can support small publishers, many of us have begun to look beyond doing what we've been doing, perhaps for the next challenge, perhaps to do something completely different.
In a way, it can be like any job, I suppose.