Big Bear Butt asks, "Can 25 man raids really be as fun as 10’s to play in, if most people have to be bribed to take part in them?"
I don't know, BBB. But one could ask, "If 10s are really that much more fun, why do they need higher quality rewards? Surely the extra fun is more important than the lower level loot."
But both questions miss the point. Or more accurately, both questions twist the situation, conveniently ignoring many aspects of the problem.
Here's how I look at it:
1. 25s are more fun than 10s.*
2. 25s are more significantly more work than 10s for the officers.
* Not really up for debate. Just accept that I personally find 25s more fun than 10s.
So it's a question of marginal value. Does the extra fun outweigh the extra cost. In the current game, the calculation is, "Does extra fun + greater quality loot outweigh the extra cost?" The answer for a lot of people is Yes. However, there are still a lot of people who answer No and do mainly 10s. Or they don't consider 25s more fun, so the decision is solely "greater quality loot versus extra work".
In Cataclysm, the question will be, "Does extra fun + greater quantity of loot outweigh the extra cost?" I think that a far greater majority of officers will answer No. And people who are willing to lead guilds are the heart and soul of the WoW community. The rest of us will follow their lead.
As for quantity versus quality of loot, we've debated that before. For some reason, quality is far more important to PvE. Witness the fuss made over Best-in-Slot gear versus gear that is just slightly worse.
The only time quantity of loot actually matters is if gear becomes very hard to obtain. For example, the switch from tier set pieces to tokens. Blizzard is not going to cripple 10s by making the quantity of loot low enough to actually be a factor worth considering when debating between 10s and 25s. Or if they do, the howls when the only item that drops off the boss is Spell Power plate--or something else unusable--will quickly force them to reconsider.
25s may drop more loot, but 10s will drop enough loot. And at that point, I don't think the extra fun will outweigh the extra work for the officers.
On the other hand, perhaps putting all this extra work on the officers was a bad idea in the first place. I've been raiding for several years now, first in 40s and then 25s, and I've seen a lot of officers burn out. As I mentioned above, these players are usually the heart and soul of the guild and community. Perhaps sacrificing 25s is worthwhile if it keeps them playing and involved in the game at a comfortable level.