Interesting. Partially agree with what he said. I play TSW and the quests there is much much better than the WoW design. There are many aspects of TSW that I hope to see as a template for future MMO. Unfortunately, too many will follow WoW simply because it is the most successful.
Saying that, there are things that WoW does is better. Making the players having to talk to NPC for gaining quests is a two edge sword. On the first hand, it encourages players to discover things, a sense of adventure, which is a good thing. But it can also be missed by the players. The ring, while sounding like an excellent idea, can be missed. How many of us jumps into every pool in WoW just for fun? If players never jumps into that pool with the ring, they will never get to experience the quest. As a developer, you do not really want to put time into something that will not be fully utilized by the players. Using the ring as an example, the developer could put several rings in many pools to increase the chance of discovery.
Maybe that is the option. Rather than having a single trigger point for a quest, like all MMOs, have multiple trigger point so to increase the chance of players discovering the start of a quest.