About the surface issue... In my opinion at the times were the surfaces were much diversified tennis was much more entertaining but I understand why it has been changed. I remember around 2000 an increase of interesting in women's tennis, it made inter alia an impact on Eurosport which decided to switch its focus from men's to women's tennis. Average spectators want to witness longer rallies, so officials made all effort to deliver it slowing down the game, in a consequence the game became more one-dimensional in terms of game-styles as well as achievements by particular surfaces. In today's culture (I think tennis is a part of it) everything what has to be sold depends on an average taste
Yes, it's true. I remember well the years 1998-2000, the buzz about WTA was just immense, pretty much nobody was giving a shit about ATP, other than story of Agassi's resurgence. Which in a way is funny because the widely criticized serve-fest of the '90s was already winding down in those years.
Problem is that they went to other extreme, all the surfaces were homogenized and now it's same kind of tennis played everywhere. Funnily enough, I put tiny blame on Clijsters, she showed you can slide on hardcourts (insanity of insanities) and other ppl copied it, men & women alike.
Another problem is that when ISL collapsed, tournaments became a LOT more cost-conscient, and went to easily maintainable hardcourts everywhere to save money. This killed green clay.