If sitting quiet is boring, you are doing it wrong. Sitting quiet, melding into the background, and watching the goings and happenings is what gives me a clue on the social hierarchy and a collective mindset of a place. Are their nature sounds? are there people on computers working? Are there those jerks who talk loudly on their phones? What music is playing? How well insulated are the walls? Are people having a group conversation, or are there groups of people talking to one-another in separate conversations?
Back in the day, if you joined a good forum, there were strong limits placed on you. You had to log in 10,15, even 30 days before you could talk. You had to read threads. You had to get a feel for the community before you jumped in. Some out there think this is not worth it; those people are wrong IMO. This type of newbe limiting forces a new person to get a feel of the community, get a feeling of belonging, and seriously weeds out the trolls. Snapzu is about the closest modern interpretation of that new-guy limitation. You have to get involved at a beginner level to get the feel of the place before you can really take part. There is one other benefit to this style of system. After the trial period, saying "Hi, I'm new here" means something. You are willing to be a part of the community, be a part of the conversations and are (probably) not a troll. It is a way to give new users a bit of heft in their introductions and first few postings so that they don't get immediately shouted down, down-voted and muted.
Maybe this goes with a general cultural shift that sees everyone as having an opinion, and everyone's opinion having equal weight. People are too busy trying to be heard that putting even a minor speed bump forcing people to listen is seen as a major transgression. I've talked in other threads that when someone says something that I think is off, offensive, wrong, or inappropriate I look through past conversations. The neat thing about an internet forum is that we get the ability to do this. If the poster has a history of being out there just for the Lulz, fine, mute. If the post was a failed attempt at a joke, fine, we all think we are funnier than we really are and jokes over text are hard anyway.
And if you think this is just me being nostalgic for days gone by remember that Isaac Newton wrote about those damn kids not listening, as did Socrates. This is not an age thing either. New people come in and see people talking, they see a community and want to be a part of it. That's good! New blood keeps places like this alive.