Thanks for the detailed reply and all your work you put in this platform! Since you've asked for some ideas:
- itch.io purple - $5 a month for a purple name, purple border around your profile pic and a good feeling ;)
- sourceforge seems to be successfull in keeping misleading ads of their download pages, maybe they have some infos on how to achieve this
- itch.io awards - you can award games with special badges for gamefeel, funny story, etc, awards cost $2-$10 and revenue will be split with creator
- probably needs some kind of itch.io coins that you can exchange for awards because of transaction costs
- creator can opt out of awards, award categories?
- reddit could be of inspiration here