Unfortunately, no response from ST regarding the old forums will satisfy the members here who contributed to it.
"There are still some products out in the wild that have direct links to the help"
If this is the case, then the discussions in the old forums would have still been accurate and relevent to those users running those versions.
"With every purchase, you get a free ticket(s)"
These expire, every year and unfortunately the ST gives the air of "every ticket costs a ticket"... Yes, a ticket can be refunded, but from the customer mentality, there is a perceived loss going into the interaction; this is poor psychologically.
This is exactly why the community WAS worth it's weight in gold.
The answers were there and easy to find. Now we are left with a hollow shell of what we had and the customer base simply doesn't trust ST anymore.
By unilaterally deleting the old forums, you've openly stated:
"The past community input and effort is worth less than using a lesser (internal) product which "has better interaction and management for reporting issues that now can be tracked""
When in reality, SmarterTrack is not a communal product. It's a helpdesk / bug tracker. We can't even private message people.
It should not be the burden of the community to make your lives easier at the cost of alienating and severely upsetting your user base.
Without us, ST is nothing. Without us, you guys pack up your desks and find other jobs.
I'm not sure what the answer is, but something needs to give but by all accounts, repeatedly telling us you've made the change to "better things for everyone" when it's only made things better for you isn't going to help sway the community.
My .02, bring the forums back, in read-only mode and disable registrations (as you've had to do here as well).
If someone has an issue with a dated article there, they can open a new community thread here or (as you want people doing) open a ticket.