I am not quite certain where this thread is headed, but, as my French grandmother used to say, “I don’t know what the argument is about, but I’m opposed”. Now seriously. Listing image data is neither banned nor mandatory, and the same is true about reading them, or even about being interested in them. I wish that most things in life were this simple.
First. I always read this information in other people’s posts for the same reasons that, for example, Dan mentions above. If the information is missing I don’t enjoy the image any less, and I respect the photographer’s decision not to include the information, but I still feel that I would have liked to know
Second. I always list the following information, in this order: the lens that I used with an approximate value of the aperture (since I now only use vintage manual focus glass this information is not recorded in exif), then the camera with ISO and speed settings and exposure compensation, then the processing software that I used and, if warranted, some details about the processing itself. Why do I keep to this routine? Because the image is produced by the lens, not by the camera. The camera is just a recording device, and all current digital cameras are more or less equally proficient within their categories and price ranges. I only use Sony full frame cameras but I have never used a Sony lens, and probably never will. Why Sony? Because, as I said, I only use vintage manual focus lenses and until a few months ago Sony was the only manufacturer (other than Leica…) that offered mirrorless full frame bodies (the fact that their sensors are superb does not hurt either), and using vintage glass with DSLR’s is not as straightforward as doing so with mirrorless cameras. I have no “brand attachment” beyond these practical matters. So why do I emphasize the lens in all of this? Because different lenses have different characteristics that no camera and no processing software can emulate. If the camera and the software are any good (and the operator knows how to operate them) all they can do is faithfully to translate the image produced by the lens. No amount of sensor technology or Photoshop wizardry will give you the contrast of a Leica lens, the sharpness of a Zeiss or the color and bokeh of a vintage Rokkor or Hexanon. I feel that when I post an image I have to share this information for two reasons. First so that if somebody is interested to know why an image looks the way it looks (whether good or bad, and this may be largely subjective) they know where the look comes from, and can choose to avoid it or pursue it. Second, to do justice to those engineer/artists of years gone by who created optical masterpieces with little more than a slide rule and a drafting table. But, as I said at the beginning, people are free to read or not read any of this information, and to find it useful or useless. I would not be upset if most people just don’t care, but I would be upset if even one person who might have cared did not get the information because I did not list it.