As far as having open public channels, there's far more negative to them than positive and we maintain a stance that creating an open chat environment without a social structure behind it is an invitation for moderation and support disasters. Most people that want chat channels though are referring to guild channels, or otherwise channels they themselves can operate and choose to invite others to, and we see those as completely valid forms of chat (there's a social structure backing the channel). As I said, back in September, it's unlikely to be anything we attain for ship, but the social group-type chat features are still very much a desire for the future.
No social tools at launch beyond the friend list/facebook stuff just like we had in SC2. No clan system, it's all stuff they want "in the future"
My biggest complaint of D3 beta is that the game looks like bnet 0.2 hasn't even stepped up to version 0.3 yet. There's a "find public group" button and nothing else. If you don't want to play a specific quest, what do you do? If you want to find people to trade with, how do you do it? It's just like SC2. If you have people on your friends list you can play with them, but you are basically cut off from everyone else.
They are making the same mistake all over again. The thing is, Diablo to me requires even more social tools than SC2 bnet did, and people were universally unhappy with one, I don't see how people will be satisfied when D3 delivers the same underwhelming UI.
I just don't understand what kind of online system actively tries to stop you from communicating with other players.