I think that as STEEM moves forward we have to come to terms with the fact that the initial concept behind steem, the proof of brain, just doesn't work. People are different and have drastically different values. So the idea that the things with the most upvotes are the best is something that just needs to be trashed and we need to move forward from it.
Not to mention that the different services on Steem break it anyway, and mix in with that that someone having more money gives them a more valuable opinion, it's just not remotely accurate for assessing quality.
So if we just accept that that doesn't work I think the logical next step is to get rid of flags causing damage. You can still express that you don't like something, but the actual mechanic that is doing what you're arguing against is flags. We can never get rid of people not liking this or that, but what can be done, is to not give them a bully button.