I recently experienced a failure of one of the load lifter straps on my 2008 Golite Pinnacle. In fact, it tore right off at both ends. Took it to Golite, and they immediately identified some issue with the initial stitching, said it was all covered by the lifetime warranty, and they would double check all the other seams before sending it back fully repaired. Thank you Golite for a very pleasant experience!
Compared to many UL gear manufuacturers, of course, Golite is very large, but I think it gets to the point- in general, it is easier and more convenient to interact with UL manufacturers when you want to learn about their products or discuss repairs/defects than with larger companies. I mean, when I email arcteryx, the owner of the company doesn't respond!
There is tons of great gear out there, and I don't mean to make any hard and fast generalizations. My problem with the issue of "durability" is that people often mean very different things when they use it. In mainstream backpacking, durability means, "I want to be able to misuse this product in the worst way possible with little knowledge of its function or proper care." In this case, durability describes the ability of gear to counteract the user's negligence, their lack of knowledge or care. Now, people who use "durability" in this way almost always see it as only and ever a good thing: the more durable something is the better. Nothing could ever be too durable (of course, these might be the same people who buy a bomber bulltex jacket and never maintain the dwr, clean it, etc.). UL backpackers know that every object which weighs something has both pros and cons, and making something weigh more that it might otherwise has both pros and cons.
When some people say they are "hard on gear," it is because of the way they use it. Therefore, when they say they need something to be durable, they are referencing a particular need which they must anticipate as part of safe practice. However, when I read in the REI consumer comments section that people are "hard on gear" with the implication that I should take this as a sign of their incredible toughness rather than their ignorance, it gets on my nerves.
What is great about BPL is that people here understand there is no such thing as the BEST tent or the BEST jacket. There is no single unitary standard through which to evaluate all gear choices. BPLers know that gear choices are best made relative to a particular anticipated use. They know that some products may be more or less durable, and they can make informed choices taking into account durability, as well as numerous other factors, when choosing gear. If something is less durable, but offers numerous other advantages (say, Frogg Toggs), people on this site will modify their practices with the inherent limitations of the gear in mind rather than complain that when they accidentally put their rain pants on a mountain goat, the pants did not hold up well.
So, anyhow, I think that when mainstream hiking magazines gripe about durability without reference to any other criteria, and without discussing the cons that might come with a "durable" piece of gear, they do a real disservice to their readers and to the mountain goats who might one day sample their readers' gear.