The majority of them are saved to a backup drive so its not a big deal, and I have an iTunes backup from when I was running 8.0, but it isn't an issue of losing the pictures, not entirely. It's more about being able to save the conversations in their entirety. It's about finally having the ability to look for historical attachments in the early parts of a conversation thread. And it's about no longer needing this particular functionality, because all the images are now gone.
But then again, I'm one of those guys that holds on to conversations. If you delete them, it's not an issue for you. And I understand that this didn't happen to everyone. But what about the ones it catches completely off guard? A conversation from a family member that is no longer around, or a friend who had his life tragically cut short. I can't help feel bad for any potential losses that cannot be recovered.
Besides, this is less about placing blame on those that don't back up their images, and more about finding out what caused the losses. And to find out if it is preventable, or if there is a way to recover the lost data. I mean, who expects a something like this would ever happen?