To whoever is interested:
I've been interested by the discussion here on the pedagogy (or otherwise) of sticky posts and email replies to forums: https://tracker.moodle.org/browse/MDL-3714
I was also interested by Andrew's comment "I have tried to start discussions on the forums, I've had little response to my questions which has been very frustrating on my part"
And the sticky post item: https://tracker.moodle.org/browse/MDL-372 from 2003.
I am really grateful to see some movement on the forum issue.