Toss the 15 minutes of chat time out the window per public post. That's way too complex. Keep it simple.
The live chat was never suppost to be a feature we "made money" directly off of. It's a component of the site to complement the other features. An incentive to sign up.
At the max, it should be available to premium members. I'd like to see the data mining on it, to see if Excel is right in the regard that it is slowly leaning towards more posting on the boards.
One perspective to have on it, is exactly what Bird pointed out -- is that it keeps the useless chatty-type discussions off the message boards, but the fundamental discussions of the investment (DD, views, news, etc) on the board, which is of more interest to me, if I am reading a message board.
I want to realize some profit off of the DigiChat, but I don't want to make it too complicated. There are several ways to look at the program. It is similar in regards to private messages. We don't realize profit off of those (only 2 people see them), but they are an incentive to join the site.
I'd be interested in the data mining results before I comment on it further. But I don't want to see it go away, because it is something that makes IH different from the other sites.