One of the big reasons that people get turned off to pool is that the minute somebody gets good at the game, they try to rob money from every person who walks into a pool room just looking to have some fun, and, traditionally, the owners of rooms did nothing to stop this behavior.
Thus, young folks who may have stuck with the game, got tired of the hustles and just stop going to play. The game gets a bad name and rap, the corporate folks outside of pool run for the hills, and here we are all over again back to stage 1- happens every time that I can remember since 1967 when I started visiting rooms.
Now I know that golf has its share of gambling too- but when i started playing golf in the 1980s- NOT ONCE- in every visit to a golf course, did someone try to pull a hustle- not once in hundreds of trips to the course. Of course one may gamble among friends, etc. but there was never an outsider trying to get into your pocket- everyone was there just to enjoy the day- and the corporate sponsors come to golf in droves!
Pool misses the mark every time because it never had any long term vision for success and sustainability that was universally put into practice.
Brunswick had two big shots at it in 1961 and 1986 and both times they failed to do more than just promote their own equipment- Brunswick could have led much more in many areas related to sustainability of the game of pool. It may now take a European or Asian company to come here some day and do it right from the start- pool schools, well run rooms, education to the masses, etc. etc.