This is a common problem my Discourse discussion forums for regular users:
I now that Jeff has a strong belief in making it hard and counter-intuitive for users to join and contribute to forums, believing that the barriers to entry make a better forum of more dedicated and users - and that may be true in the really high volume technically-oriented user sites like Boing Boing and Stack Overflow - but I don’t believe that is true in the regular forums that are 98% of the potential user base.
Is there any evidence that the many non-technical people that are turned away from our forums because of the UI/UX barriers to entry, are actually going to be unhelpful/negative participants in our forums. Basically what we are really doing is turning away and confusing our less technical users. This is not a helpful strategy for all the forum owners who don’t have the most technical, internet savvy user base.