Adam said: kind of turned me off from the AT as a whole
I've experienced both WB and the AT. Don't be discouraged by anything on the web to get turned off from the AT. The AT has many great miles of hiking. Incredible variety. Tradition and history.
As for WB, think bobcats. They're fine when they're out in the wild, but crowd too many of them into a small web site and fur will fly. Herding bobcats doesn't work well.
For BPL, think of a pack of wolves. The alpha that keeps the pack stable is a common goal - seeking lighter-ness. We'll growl and show teeth, but usually not bite each other.