I indeed drift in and out of forums. The primary reason being the arrival of one (or several) massively enthusiastic "carpet bombers" who post 15-20, even 30 (!) times a day, derailing existing conversations and digging up dead horse threads by the dozen. The din goes on for months, sometimes a year or two, then they disappear.
How long the quiet lasts varies. But another CB Crew invariably shows up and the cycle repeats.
They aren't "bad" people, it's just human nature doing its thing with a "convection style" hobby---people are constantly losing interest in pipes at the same time others are discovering them---but the conversational bus being steered by a never ending supply of newbies can definitely be frustrating to us Oldsters who started on boards before the World Wide Web even existed (it was called Usenet).
Ahhh... Such is the digital life, right?
The limitations of written communication are also a Forum Problem.
The only response to that is either excessive/oppressive moderation Melvin Board-style, or let the fires start and hope not too many people are lost.
In short, like shopping malls, threaded forums became victims of their own fundamentally flawed design.
You guys seem to have found your way to an extended period of intelligent, informed, good-humored conversation, though---a quiet park with a pond, some picnic tables, and shade trees---so I thought I'd check back in.
Besides, the world will soon be ending with Coronazilla on the rampage. Just check the news. Those guys never lie or exaggerate.