I can completely understand where the original poster of this topic is coming from - I made a very similar one years and years ago ("STOP BEING HORRIBLE ABOUT ALTON TOWERS!!
")! When the site/forums first started, it was very much a place for people who loved Alton Towers to come together and gush about the park they loved, and what they loved about it - and discover those other people who felt as passionately as they did - I certainly never found any at school, so TTF always used to be a place of kindred spirits for me, where we could all happily discuss our passion for the park together.
Nowadays, obviously the Internet is part of a daily life for a sizable portion of society, and people with such a (what was used to be perceived as) unique passion can very easily find it is more commonplace than they first thought, and it's not such a surprise anymore. Usage of the Internet/TTF has also changed - whereas originally, posters on TTF had no clue that Towers management would be reading the boards, now it's obviously more of a marketing tool/oft tapped resource of feedback and ideas. People now easily bear this in mind, and often (unintentionally or not) aim their posts squarely at Towers management, rather than each other.
So with that, comes the negativity. There's undoubtedly been a large shift in the way the park is run in the last decade or so... and unfortunately, it's not to most people's preference. The negativity, I've come to learn, is just a testimony to how passionate people are for the park. People are clearly keen for their ideas and feedback to be heard, and this is a very valuable tool for them to do so.
I certainly miss the days we all used to just have a massive conversation with each other, bumming Alton Towers unashamedly, blissfully unaware that anyone except ourselves were reading. Unfortunately, those days will never return, even if the 'old' Alton Towers a lot of us remember from the 80s and 90s came back! On another level, the freedom for people to be negative is also a testimony to the battle the team have had with the park over the years - certainly a few years ago, the park took a very heavy-handed approach with us for such negativity, and we shunned the idea that the team would have to moderate negative posts. I don't generally like negativity, but the idea of having to censor the forums was obviously not something we ever considered, despite the pressure.
I find for the most part, discussion on here is very constructive. That's not to say I don't think certain members level an inherently critical eye over absolutely everything unnecessarily, and I do think that is quite common too. But ultimately, it shows the level of passion people have for the park, and the negativity and feedback has often achieved good things with the park, in terms of them reversing bad decisions.