I was reading an article a few days ago by an AFLW player who accused the AFL of being misogynists for holding the AFLX during prime time on Friday night. She stated that the AFLW should have been on at that time instead. And yet AFLX had 24,000 paying customers and won it's time slot whilst the following day the AFLW games attracted around 1,500 people who got in for free. The average ratings for the AFLW games was 39,000 NATIONALLY. The AFL and the broadcasters (as well as other media) have given A LOT of publicity to the woman's game but the reality is you simply can't make a silk purse out of a sow's ear.
If we're being honest at least half of the 39000 that watched the women's game are men hoping one of the prettier girls gets 'dacked'.
Once the novelty of that wears off viewer numbers will be cut to a handful of angry, bitter lesbians and a wistful Alan, sorry, Helen Mouncey.
Being slightly more serious, everything you say is true. However, I am happy for the AFL to subsidise the game for awhile to see it if takes off. The standard has improved, but it has a long way to go.