To address the issue of a general lack of debate (it's there in NP, mostly, but even there it's only at moderate levels), we have an entire forum for it.
The problem is that nothing is being organized for it. I understand keeping it restricted - it's a good idea in a few regards. But maybe we need to stick a thread in there for debate ideas and volunteers to offer themselves up, randomly draw a pairing or topic a week, and roll with it. I'm not gonna stick my head in for it - I'm shit at debating, as anyone who's ever taken me on knows in excruciating detail. But it'd certainly help make that 'high debating standards' boast a little more accurate these days.
As for the rest, yeah, open reg with image post restrictions sounds good. I'm actually on a hotmail account and joined during the lockdown - didn't donate, as was required for such email domains at the time, since I had no money. Instead, I emailed one of the mods (or maybe Wong, it's been a long time) to see if it'd be alright anyway, and here I am. I know at least two other people who wanted to join but were broke and only had forbidden email domains, and who didn't put in the effort to contact the staff. Would they have been any good? I don't know for sure, but they might have been but didn't end up getting a chance. We've also fallen off the radar a fair bit these days - gone are the raging haters, despite our past. Our last invasion was a chan, and they invade anything that moves for shits and giggles! So since most of the board's old enemies don't matter, it's not such a risk - and one we probably need to take.
"You're wonderful, and you're alive, and you deserve every little bit of happiness that the universe has to offer anyone, no matter who or what you like. Never forget that." - Achewood