I've had people drop out of queues on tribble and it put me back into the queue just like on holodeck. There's just not enough people actually queuing on tribble most of the time to get back into a group, so you just sit in the queue for a long time.
I think this is a brilliant change on Cryptic's part. The less information players have the better the game becomes. People won't flock to the "busy" missions but will spread out to the more unpopular, but no less brilliant, events. This is social engineering at it's finest.
I think you have cause and effect mixed up. People don't think a mission is good because it has a high number of queued people; rather, a mission has a high number of queued people because it's good!
And pretty lamo on the part of Cryptic, really, to try and mask the fact that some (most?) of their missions suck. "Popularity thru obscurity" is not going to wash. People are not retarded. Nothing will change. People will still queue for "Fleet Alert," and avoid "Starbase 24."
The only thing that will change, really, is the fact that people will be more annoyed at Cryptic for masking an issue (bad missions and/or lack of new content), instead of *fixing* the problem. Too busy plotting for new lockbox schemes to do the latter, I guess.
My guess is that change was done for streamlining the look than any 'get more people to play random queues' idea. The queue looks sharp, and adding the number of current players in it will slightly detract from the look. As nice looking as it is, people will come to hate it if it isn't usable.
The missing player count is not so massively bad on the fed side. Its just completely idiotic. But on the kdf side its catastrophically because of the much lower player count.
Removing functionality that is pretty much essential to a game system is well, just completely moronic.. The player count is essential. Otherwise i don't even need the queue system.