no one was forcing anyone to update...... AMD is likely doing this to save money and no, discontinuing an active driver improvement program and changing it to a reactionary one will likely not end positively which is a shame given AMD's drivers were arguably getting better than Nvidia's (cards that exploded and cards that burned out in SC2 due to driver issues anyone?).
the monthly update process seemed to cause more pr problems for AMD anyway so it's a win win with saved money and a better looking product presented the same way Nvidia does it.
Except video card drivers are large, complex pieces of software with the ability to bring down your whole system when things go awry (WDDM went a long way to alleviate this, but parts of the code still have to run in ring 0). A monthly release schedule for a piece of software can make sense depending on the scope, project resources, and team ability, but the level of validation necessary for a device driver is substantial and doesn't really make sense to try to do every single month. And from what my friend told me while he was on the Catalyst test team, it wasn't really working out for AMD either.
Yes, it's valid to be concerned that AMD's response to issues might be more delayed, but their monthly driver release didn't really help fix issues any faster (how many driver versions was the SC2 mouse cursor bug in? And how many revisions later did it suddenly reappear?). I'm fairly confident if you compare how long it took AMD to resolve any particular bug and how long it took nVidia to resolve any of their particular bugs, you're likely going to find the timeframes to be about the same. Except, AMD ends up getting more PR flak because they keep releasing official drivers that don't fix the problem.