"I am defin[I]tely not a WT apologist, but I think too much is being read into this. I think they are "discouraging" over the top affection during prayers, like say a full frontal hug between husband a wife, or a group of 5 single pioneer sisters linking arms or holding hands (which I used to see ever stinking mtg, didn't offend me, but was very corny)"
I tend to agree with this assessment by Trescedu. I don't see a big problem with this.
I observed some hand-holding by groups, especially at assemblies, and some affection shown by married couples. While I wasn't too bothered by it, I thought it looked kind of strange at times. I can't put my finger exactly on what bugged me about it, it just looked weird. Cameo-d mentioned that it seemed "pretentious", and I think that's what bothered me.
On the other hand, I can see this "counsel" being taken by judgmental types (who abound at every meeting) and run with in the wrong direction. Lots of little Pharisees in those congregations, you know.