I don't think it was hostile as such, but did require users to learn the netiqette first. Once upon a time people would do that, but come the age of cheap computers and bacefook lots of the ordinary public were starting to use it, and they weren't interested in having adult conversations. The thing that probably made HC relatively less attractive was that it stopped being the wild frontier, all new and exciting, and became just another cafe with children running around.
Back OT - Cheap guitars, I've had a few. Still sometimes use a bolt-neck First Act singlecut for an occasional electric slide gig. Cost me £35/$40.