I don't think it's a horrible idea to be connected when you want to be... and if your reader has web access, you've got that connectivity. If I were a manufacturer, I would make sure my device had internet access regardless: Not only for community interaction, but in order to go online and buy the e-books in the first place.
I'd also make sure you could disconnect when you didn't want the distractions.
I do think that, other than providing connectivity, the manufacturers should stay out of the activity itself. Their expertise is the hardware, and they should stay with that, and let the websites and users dictate what they want to do.