The original conversation can be found here:
"A 'Brief' History of AV, Part I"
To take action towards bringing back a Classic-style AV, check out this thread:
"Save Alterac Valley Letter Writing Campaign"
"Why Isn't AV Fun Anymore?"
Please note that although the title implies brevity, this document is actually rather extensive.
A Brief History of Alterac Valley
Or, "How It All Went Wrong."
Part One: Vanilla
Way back in the time of unlinked flight paths and dishonorable kills, there came a great Patch. This Patch was known as 1.5.0, and it brought about a number of significant changes to this game we so dearly adore. Some changes, though still important, were minor:
Sitting characters will now stand up immediately after an attack, even if stunned.
Other patch notes, however, shook and shattered the very foundations of Warcraft as we knew it:
Mage Armor - Now has a new, unique icon.
Yes, it was a time of great change, and though mages everywhere wait with bated breath in the hopes that Mirror Image will one day receive such an honor as this, the—
Wait a minute. I've forgotten something.
The Warsong Gulch and Alterac Valley battlegrounds are now available.
A gigantic, snowy warzone with all the ingredients for a truly legendary experience. Upon entry to this wondrous new battleground, players were faced with a number of avenues by which to achieve victory over their mortal enemies.
How would you contribute to the battle? Would you ride out to Winterax Hold, attempting to slay the mighty Korrak the Bloodrager? What about going toe-to-toe with an enemy Captain, in the hopes of depriving your opponent of their precious perodic Warcry buff?
In a group, you might capture an enemy bunker or even hold the line as they try to do the same to one of yours. Alone, you could gather supplies for an infantry assault that would rip the enemy defenses to pieces.
The battle might last an hour. It might last two hours, five hours, a day, or even longer! In the event of such a stalemate, players could outfit elite cavalry riders, call in powerful air strikes, enlist the aid of dangerous infantry units, or even summon a powerful Elemental Lord to aid in their struggle.
There was PvP, PvE, and even a little PvPvE: Something for everyone to do, even tanks. This was the beginning of the golden age of Classic Alterac Valley...
At this time, a number of balancing changes occurred, about which I will not go into detail here. While some people might remember this time in a less than positive light, please bear in mind that classes were not nearly as well balanced for PvP back then as they are now. Many other players remember having an enormous amount of wholesome, nutritous fun in Old AV, and with no need for a daily win, most people who didn't want to play AV didn't have to.
Alas, the days of being blown apart by landmines in the Field of Strife and calling upon your allies to heal the shredder did not last forever.