My gut feeling is still that the headings are not prosaic enough, and that the long text is distracting from what I would consider the main purpose of that page, which is to have a clear path to somewhere else! The long descriptions could sit inside the forums, when you click through you'd read them. Or there could be an Basics of OBOD Druidry read only forum for newbies, sitting at the top.
I go back to the screenshot I posted. I maintain that the user faced with that page has a clearer choice of actions. Two things I did there - replaced the forum titles with more descriptive taglines and got rid of most of the text descriptions.
You made the page shorter in length, which is good, but then you went and added a lot of extra stuff that undid your good work (the long poetic non-descriptive blocks of text).
Still, I bow to your superior judgment on the matter, and to the user testing you've already done. Without knowing more about the process of testing you did, I can't really say anything about the matter.
Fox, we did user testing before we brought this board online and incorporated many of the suggestions. We did not, however, use volunteers who have nothing to do with the board as we wanted the members' opinions since they are the ones using it. And we had a sampling from brand new members through ones that had been here since the initial board was online.
In addition, we a limited to what the board can do technically. We have added some things but have found in the past that adding too many "bells and whistles" creates problems with response time etc. So there may be some things we can do about the general layout without compromising the Board integrity. But others we are not willing to even attempt because of the size of this board.
The reason we removed many of the subforums from view was because of numerous complaints that the board was "cluttered." We thought making it more like a Windows based format where you have tabs then add'l tabs would resolve the issue and people would learn just where their particular favorite tab was in time.
The descriptions are primarily for newcomers to help them become used to not just the board, but OBOD druidry at its basics.
Now, that said, I am not against making changes to make things easier. Heck no! Our goal is not to make this a place of confusion, but a place of companionship. But in the end, no matter what is done, some people will really like the changes, some will not.