Real world: RPTV was a 2+ million unit market. It wasn't small, till demand evaporated. It was on the order of $5 billion worth of stuff. Not peanuts. Certainly not the kind of thing where a few crap-ass class actions would've shut it down pretty much entirely.
Real world #2: Your claim is ludicrous, like everything you claim more or less. Plasma is still allegedly "surely going to burn in" according to so many people. Yet 20+ million have been sold in the U.S. and virtually no one (not no one, virtually no one) complains of burn in. If any technology was going to die to FUD, it was plasma. Yet it thrives -- and grows.
RPTV sales died to flat panel demand. Everyone wanted a flat panel, even if they never hung it on a wall. Many of those people were directed to their choices in concert with something you're probably unfamiliar with called a "woman". They tend to like attractive things and those DLP boxes weren't attractive.
DLP has been the dominant FP technology for more than 10 years and has killed off pretenders to the throne like LCOS (sold in tiny volumes by JVC and Sony, but tiny) and LCD (whose ass DLP kicks all over the sales charts). DLP still has a pretty great reputation overall.
Feel free to believe DLP died to quality, I don't really care what you believe. It died to lack of demand. So did all variants of LCOS RPTV and LCD RPTV. They all died in the span of about 2 years because flat panels got cheap enough that nearly everyone in the market for an HDTV could afford one. That was that. Everyone making RPTVs simply stopped making RPTV -- except the one company that had absolutely no other strategy and (to it's credit) saw the opportunity to be the last to serve the niche market.
If your scenario was even remotely real, Mitsubishi would be especially foolish to be following this niche strategy centered entirely around DLP. But fortunately, this allegedly negative association around DLP never existed, they were just fat and people didn't want fat TVs. Feel free, again, to ask anyone in the industry. RPTV had a great run for 15ish years and then pretty much overnight, it was gone. No one wanted them. (Millions also went to develop several competing microdisplay technologies. All such investment ended when venture capitalists and corporate investors realized that every forecast showing RPTV growth was not only wrong, but terribly, terribly wrong.)
Again, if your logic was valid, Mitsubishi would keep selling DLP in the 50s and 60s categories for peanuts since, well, people would buy them if they didn't reject DLP outright (if they did, they'd also reject the giant Mitsus too). Except they wouldn't be able to give them away. Mitsu is moving only to sell the really big sizes where flat panels (a) can't go realistically at all or (b) can kinda go there, but not at a reasonable price. It's a good, tiny strategy. It's -- as I said -- a few hundred million-dollar business. Not peanuts, but let's not kid ourselves. It's a far, far cry from the old days where Mitsubishi did north of $1 billion in 1990s dollars peddling RPTVs (they probably did north of $2 billion, but I have no figures, just some napkin math).
Again, believe what you want. Since most of this is matters of fact, you'd be believing things that aren't likely accurate, but that's fine. It's a free country. People believe that with 80% of the federal budget tied up in things that are not being discussed for cuts (Medicare -- cuts proposed for 10 years out, Social Security -- no cuts proposed, interest on the debt -- not cuttable, defense -- a sacred cow even though much of the defense budget is jobs/defense contractor programs unrelated to national security), we can zero out the deficit on the other 20% all without raising revenues one thin dime. I point that out because, well, it illustrates how having some small modicum of knowledge without seeing the big picture leads to wildly erroneous conclusions.
(Aside: I believe the government can massively cut spending in the near, intermediate and long term and that it will also need to take in more revenues since the portion of GDP paid in taxes has remained more or less constant for generations and is currently running about 25% below that proportion. I believe the government generally is a terrible user of money, but that some things that already exist are not going to unexist, and we need to live with them. I believe both political parties have smart people in them, but most of what they state publicly is so frighteningly inaccurate or uninformed, it's terrifying that they control my and your tax dollars. If you wish to debate politics with me, we'll find a place that isn't here. That offer is open to most of you, but not one I'm especially hoping anyone takes me up on.)
Finally, perception is everything. My perception is you're an ignoramus. You think you know a lot, but more importantly you think if you can just win one round of this argument, you'll be able to lord it over me for time immemorial. To be clear, I don't wish this to be a personal attack, so I want to emphasize that's my personal opinion. It's quite likely that you are incredibly intelligent, witty, fun to be around, well spoken, mature, good looking and generally the kind of person who people just want to get to know -- and then get to know better. It just doesn't come off that way here.
Your perception is that I'm an ass. I'm not especially bothered by that as it concerns you because I'm not trying to be "nice" in this discussion. I find arguing the compass orientation of the sun rise to be tiresome and you are behaving like the guy who insists the sun rises in the west and sets in the east.
Many people here know me pretty well and are interested in what I have to say. If you aren't, place me on ignore. But please stop trying to argue with me over things I know to be true. I don't wish to be rude, but when you claim things like DLP died off due to lawsuits when probably less than 1% of consumers even knew of such lawsuits (I didn't, and I'm informed here), I just find that borderline laughable.
There are lawsuits around pretty much everything these days and yet virtually none of the things/companies being sued give up or disappear. People in $5+ billion-dollar markets don't go away because of a few lawsuits. If the issue was perception, they'd have spent to counter it. Not unlike the way Panasonic has kept the plasma business growing and thriving in spite of more than 10 years of FUD around the technology. They wouldn't have closed up shop because some tiny, tiny, tiny minority of customers was off put by lawsuits (I actually believe that tiny minority is non existent, but I'll concede there are some crazy people who reject pretty much everything in existence for some reason).
I have no clue what market research you've read, but people don't give reasons for not considering DLP and RPTV, they simply don't even see them anymore at retail. They might as well be gone. The few that seek out the Mitsus can find them, the rest of the world might as well not know they exist. When they did exist, they were very popular, sold very well and made a bunch of people happy. And a bunch of us said, "As soon as flat panels are cheap enough, bye bye RPTV." You can search the AVS archives for my 100s of comments on those topics. And you know what? We were right. If the demand died up due to some perception, it would've been a slow burn because people would've had to learn about it without anyone "marketing" the fact. Instead, demand fell off a cliff. And that can only be explained by a discontinuous change in the market.
What was that change? One year, the 50" flat panel was running 2x the price of the DLP. The next year it was 30% cheaper and was just a few $100 more. More important, it was for sale at a price low enough that people who had already delayed their HDTV purchase were ready to now pay that price for an HD flat panel. And just like that, it was over. I love that you think Hitachi, Toshiba, Sony, JVC and Samsung all left this gigantic market because they just couldn't counter a niggling little perception problem. Not because the market vaporized beneath them.
There's a saying about "everything in moderation". If only it was applied to well, you know...