After reading the latest series of broadsides against Word of Mouth, I thought, "Uh-oh, I hope the Center can hold." Then what to my wandering eyes should appear at the top of the very page: "Loose cannon or vanilla ice cream."
I thought you very nicely took care of the tenor of the current complaints - it looks like the center is holding! Sharing your WOM thoughts every six months (or oftener if the situation requires) is a good idea.
I strongly support the idea of WOM for the very reasons you so well stated: "... often, amid the gratuitous insults, etc., etc., lurked a germ of social commentary," and "...Take away WOM and they become a little less empowered and a little more frustrated." It will be interesting to see how that sits!
Maybe a contest is in order: Invite critics to select a dozen WOM comments that they find to be particularly offensive, and present their, er, correct understanding of the situations. (Then again, if WOM has become more work for you, this should really make it worse.)
After the satisfied feeling I mentioned in paragraph one above, I turned to page 30 of Channels for some comic relief. What! No News of the Weird? Down with everybody and everything!