overbearing "proper decorum" would be the death of vibrancy for the site
I agree that this has been having an effect in the forums, but I seriously doubt that is having any effect on download counts. It looks quiet around here because alot of things that happen in the forums now takes place behind the scenes. Yahoo IM, Skype, MSN, IRC, etc. is where alot of action takes place.
handful of us have tried to keep it going, but it's an uphill battle when the majority stays away in droves
I don't believe they are staying away in droves. It's summer now, and it has always been quieter in the summer months. Many are out mowing the lawn, playing in the sandbox with the kids, having BBQ's. It's just too nice out there! Things will pick up in the colder months.
new site grade: C
We just need to give them more time to get things in working order. I'm sure they are busting their butts to get it running right, but these things can take some time. It's up to us to make this place better by telling them what does not work, and giving them time to fix it.
disappearance of a lot of people who were fixtures here
Yup, and now WE are the fixtures. I have noticed alot of new faces making comments on my skins, more than before. Instead of regretting that people have left, we should be encouraging and helping the new people who are just getting to know us. It's up to US to make this place better if we don't like what we see.