I know it was problematic for a lot of people and I understand why... the implementation wasn't great.
The flip side is that I was enjoying it tremendously. There was very little around my home but I'd managed to turn the town around my office into a well-tended Machina garden. Each day on my commute I'd take out a couple dozen red portals, leaving enough behind that it would grow back so that I could harvest some more the next day. Hunting it down also pointed me toward unique caps in areas that I hadn't explored, or newly-created portals that I'd overlooked... double onyx isn't going to pioneer itself. I also had fun on road trips because I would target towns that had an overgrowth of red and clean a lot of it out as I passed through.
I hope it comes back soon, albeit in a less problematic form. It gave me something new and interesting to do and I enjoyed that aspect of it.