It's not just SEO! It is also automated content systems, but certainly getting tons of profile links and comments on unrelated blogs and many other automated tools are a big problem.
I would go so far as to say there is more money in selling the tools than what the tools produce. Everyone wants traffic and rankings and ways to make money but so often I see the dream being sold, but the tools use tactics that create the opposite.
That is very unfortunate, and I hope the people on the forum need not feel ashamed of talking about quality, and calling out bad strategies that just don't work.