Gotcha, thanks for the insight. A band that comes to mind who has been able to navigate the majors their way is MGMT. The first album had these huge singles with Kids and Time to Pretend, and they went against that with their follow-up, and based on interviews I've seen, they seemed to have the ball in their court when it came to the control. Glad you guys are in a better position with Hopeless now, they seem to handle their bands well.
At the same time, MGMT regressed with Congratulations in the opinion of most people. At least with their first album they had huge singles. Their second had a coupld of tracks which received air play just because of the debut's success but had little going for it truthfully. A band with such strong ability to write hit pop songs might be best sticking to that. If Congratulations had another Time To Pretend on it it would have been more successful all around. Not defending major label idiots whose only concern is the bottom line, just pointing out that constructive criticism isn't the worst thing in the world. Hell, MIA's label should have asked her to put a hook into at least one song on her last album and it might have been listenable.