When I first joined I didn't even realise there was much of a chat section and then when I found it I didn't really know who anyone was (or their real names sometimes) but posting on specific threads in other areas of the forum got me more familiar with who everyone was.
I think what happened with Daily Chat was that it became almost too popular for a while - I remember signing on at work and having to make a note of who had posted what in order to do personals, and it could run to 20+ people at 9 am in the morning! When it gets that hard to keep track it's no wonder people stopped responding to other's posts.
It used to get very busy in the evening, which is when a lot of the "chat" used to happen - the trouble with the "chatroom" now is that if it gets busy you can easily have no clue about what is going on, whereas in Daily you could always read back to catch up.
I hardly ever go in the chatroom now as there's way too much talk about nappies for me