My opinion:
Both the lacking avatars and the change to only one star (and fun customised titles) is psychologically making this site less "fun"/nice to be in, and almost play a part of the "design". We loose an important aspect of the communication and "relations", I think.

Are such things important for you?
1. Yes, very important, affects how much I use this site
2. Yes, important for me, don't know if it affects my usage
3. I do not have an opinion on this/I am indifferent.
4. No, it is not important
5. No, actually an annoyance, please do not offer it.