Wow, if blizzard adding some more bandwidth to this site, this is an excellent tool (from guild management, to looking at the competition, to seeing what gear people have all without their consent (I am sure the EULA says they can do this).
NGiven the competitive nature of the raid scene, I'd prefer people didn't have access to see my gear. It begs the question: what gear do they see? What I'm wearing when I log off? What I am currently wearing? What I was wearing at last maintenance?
Its at least somewhat delayed but fairly close to live data. Will take a while for it to be determined for sure what forces an update and I'm sure blizzard will be adjusting this a lot while its tuned for performance on a larger scale.
Also, I hope Blizzard will add some of the information to the armory it apparently isn't showing yet but they track. Example being how many times your character has died.
(Yes, I feel being a warrior who tanks content without defiance better than some, gives me the option to hassle you, oh-brother-in-arms.)
I like this idea, and I honestly don't care about "privacy" options as I feel that any case you can make for a "privacy" option can be countered by the premise that the people you play with are terrible individuals and generally not worth playing with if their opinion of you will change based on this information.
It seems that if you let spec be optional, you might as well remove it. For the most part, the players who will hide that information are the high-end, competitive raiders and PvPers, and that's exactly who Joe Casual wants to check. Whether it's good or not is debatable, but I think that optional isn't really a good compromise.
For what it's worth, I think it's probably not a good idea. We'll have people running around with whatever spec they happened to see off a DnT, Nihil, etc. member, but they'll have no idea what that spec was for and probably be worse for it.