I think that last point is a fair one. The internet makes it easy to find people with the same interest as you, and once you start talking with them and comparing methods, it's easy to become obsessed with method than just doing the trip.
I did trips from the UK to Europe four years in a row, from age 19 to 23, and then last year (age 24) did a more typical 'overland' style trip. Before last years trip I didn't pay any attention to this site or any other adventure/overland sites or people. From an outsiders viewpoint it's easy to only see the bmw brigade doing high budget but boring trips, and I would say I'd deliberately avoided this site and any self-identified 'overlanders' I saw at bikemeets because of that image which I had built up in my head.
I ignored all other bike tourers for similar reasons: I only saw middleclass middleaged people doing boring holidays to the south of france. Because of this I payed absolutely no attention to the way anybody else travelled by bike, and those first four trips were very unique and broke lots of 'rules' because of it.
As soon as I started paying attention to the way other people travelled on bikes, it definately made me waste time umming and arring over stupid choices. For example, I put a fair amount of thought into sleeping arrangements, and ended up buying a fairly expensive/good quality tarp/basha. It lasted less than two months before falling off the back of the bike somewhere near the aral sea in Kazakhstan never to be seen again. All the time I'd put into deciding on it wasted just like that, yet I coped perfectly well afterwards with out it.
Another example. I replaced the simple lighting coil on my bike with a proper three phase alternator and battery, because somebody else reacted to the idea of taking the lighting coil to be completely absurd. This was for charging phone and camera batteries. I never used it up untill the point one of the phases of the alternator stopped working anyway, so I continued using mains electricity for the rest of the trip. Because everyone else made it seem stupid to even consider setting off without the means to charge stuff off the bike, I didn't even think about what I needed to charge and how often I'd have to do it (once a week). If I'd been in the same situation a year earlier when I didn't listen to or take ideas from anybody about methods of bike travel, I'm sure I would have come to the logical (and correct) conclusion that charging electrics from the bike was completely unneccessary for me.