I think some of it has to do with lack of writing skill in general, not always intentionally being vague. Not all of it is innocent, but some of it is. I honestly think that some people are just not good at being able to sum up their thoughts into one short thread title. I think it is taken for granted that this is easy, but depending on the age of the poster, and their experience writing, or the grade level they might be in at school, it is all very new to them.
Some of the titles are created as attention grabbers, but sometimes, I believe posters really have not acquired the writing skill to sum up their thoughts properly to a short phrase. Those of us who are annoyed have acquired the ability to extract a key phrase from the topic to be used as a thread title.
I agree that we have to help them along. It is difficult to do without seeming “rude.” In one thread, I remember someone told an OP that their title was vague, to which they responded, “well what else could I name it?” That was an eye opener, because that poster really did not know what better title might apply. I remember we all gave alternative titles as examples. But, in that instance, the vague title was not intentional.
For a person in this situation, they might need help with a stuck bearing…so from this they extracted “Help!.” While it is true that they need help, they have not considered that they need to target those with knowledge to help them. The way to target the right help, you have to put the specific type of help needed in the title, “My Bearing is Stuck, any Suggestions?,” would suffice.
Maybe a short guide to creating a proper thread title should be made. Then, when you see someone making vague titles, just link to that guide. It is better than repeating the same things to these posters over and over again. I made a guide about shipping yo-yos because I found myself repeating myself over and over with the same advice. It makes things easier to have something to link to.