I don’t have mujch love for Paypal myself, sadly, in most parts of the world, it’s the only easy to setup payment system that’s widely accepted everywhere - both for individuals and merchants. When I looked at other options in UK for instance, the amount of bureaucracy and personal information required to setup an account with some providers is beyond ridiculous. As long as that doesn’t change, Paypal will be the preferred, even if not liked, payment provider.
On a sight note, you do not need an account to make a payment via Paypal - you can just use them for individual payments as you would any other gateway, so not really sure why it’s such a big issue?
And lastly, when dealing with any sort of ecommerce - Paypal, for clients, means security. I will not shop on an unknown site if it doesn’t have a Paypal payment option. They handle charge backs in an efficient way and you can be sure, no one will vanish with your money without fulfilling their business promise.
Oh almost forgot, unlike many payment gateways, all transactions are instant - you pay, you got it. There isn’t even a minute of a downtime, and for many people - time is money.
I agree with OP’s sentiments, and it’s great to take a stand, unfortunately, not so easy when alternatives, even if ethically better business, are behind in functionality and ease of use.
US has a fair choice of payment providers that I’d be happy using, it’s not the case in EU or the rest of the world and noone in their right mind, would limit themselves to one country only. Even Amazon doesn’t offer virtual services payments outside US - I wanted to use them as my primary gateway but it’s not possible.