I stopped posting regularly on PD before it was cool.
Seriously though, here's a few thoughts....
The amount of discourse about the Open Bar thread would be a source of constant amazement to me if I logged on regularly enough. When it was active, it produced a variety of responses. Some avoided it entirely, some thought it was irritating but had to post in it anyway, some people enjoyed it for whatever reasons they had. I don't know what they were or care for that matter.
I started the very first OB thread back in 2004 not long after I signed up for PD. I think ECH (under his magnificent original moniker, Turd Ferguson!) joined about the same week I did or I joined right after him...anyways, it was a long time ago. The original OB thread was simply a place of make believe and silliness. That's it. I really didn't expect it to be sustained for as long as it did. Hell, even I stopped posting in it regularly years before it got cancelled.
I also didn't expect that it would get copied by other forums. When Aini and Eric(?) went off and did their own forum, they included a bar. When EB&G was formed, they also had a bar thread and, I wouldn't be entirely surprised if their are other forums out there(discordian or otherwise), somewhere that did likewise. And bully for them because it makes no difference to me at all.
The original OB thread was awash with what was then called 'cookies & pie' discordianism though people might now call it Pinealism or whatever. PD took on a different vibe in 2006 onwards with the advent of the BIP project and 'cookies & pie' posting went seriously out of vogue and posters partial to it either dropped it and continued to stay or they got 'the horrors' and went somewhere else.
When the OB began, there was barely Facebook (if at all). Back in 2004 many people I knew were on a UK site called 'Friends Reunited' so they could connect with their school mates.(Can't think of anything I wanted to do less.) I don't know if the term 'blogosphere' had been coined at that time or not, but I don't remember hearing it. Seems that pre-facebook people had Livejournal (lol) or some shit like that.
Over time, probably with the exponential expansion in both blogs and FB, the Open Bar took on that colouring. But really, it was just a gag. It was near Xmas 2004 and I felt like sharing some good cheer. That was it.
When I saw people baying for the demise of a thread, it struck me as odd. As odd as it would be for anyone to campaign for it being saved. It was odd that that it was considered instrumental in a decline in post volume and quality. It's odd that after deleting it, there's some sentiment that the 'fluff buffer zone' had been comprised allowing more trivial posting to spill into other areas. It's all a bit ODD.
The OB thread was only ever a reflection of the people posting in it at any given time. It changed because the posters changed. Posters came and went and some of the same posters stayed but they changed their minds.
The OB probably didn't add or detract anything from the forum. It was ONE SINGLE THREAD. All the posts in any thread come from your brain and onto the computer via your fingers. So, check your heads if there's any questions about post quality.
As I said, it was a mirror - don't blame the mirror. Whether it stays up or gets smashed or people celebrate or lament it, it really doesn't amount to anything.
It was just a cheeky joke thread (and alt account) that got a lot of mileage. End of story.
It's ok, it's only the internet.