This is exactly on point. As a developer, I find it really frustrating when my customers insist on having features added to their websites that I know are not good UX. But they want them because their competitors are using them and for some reason, there’s still a lot of fear of being “too different” in the market.
I remember a time when the main purpose of UX design was to surprise and delight — to create an experience that users would joyfully engage with. It makes me sad that we seem to have shifted to a climate of having UX try to force people to take actions they don’t want to.
I think it’s really important to ask the question “why?” before adding the trendy new thing that “everyone is doing” into a website. As some have pointed out, there may be cases where there’s a solid business purpose for using these techniques (e.g. Instagram — infinite scroll). But if you don’t have a solid answer to the “why”, then don’t use it.