Too many people who run online forums and chats are cutting off their own noses.
Have you ever found yourself not allowed to see a site until you register to use it? I really disagree with this practice. It’s dumb!
For you as a person with an email address – you do not want to give your eamil away lightly. Until you have seen the forums or the site how do you know it’s even active, or on topic or worth spending the time to find out. If you can’t see it why register just to see it. There is a chance the site exists to gather email addresses and contact/ personal information and really has nothing (or little) else to offer.
Get real web people. Show the goods before you ask for our information. If the site has nothing to show for itself then you can’t expect people to be eager to join. I never do.
As a site reviewer I delete these type of sites unseen. Just finished doing exactly that with a forum in fact. I’m not willing to play hide and seek with websites.