this would be a good idea for sure but I see one issue. its not favorable to getting more members. with less content available on the lobby forrums and less people to interact with. Newschoolers would look like a boring place to people who are new the the site. these new members would probably find the lack of interaction boring and end up leaving the website before actualy knowing what its like
taking this thought a bit further, if a system like this was put into place, and the rate of new memberships per year went down significantly, it could have an impact on the revenue the site brings in through ads, and that would affect the contests, parties, store, and anything else this site has developed over the years.
i think that is a very elitist system though. one of the best things about ns is the access you have to a huge group of skiers across the world. implementing that would take it away from the new members who are most likely to be stoked on becoming a part of the community.
it's a free website, you shouldn't have to earn your way onto it.