Yes, I read commercial sewing patterns for fun. Patterns have changed tremendously over the course of time. Two things of note: today's patterns seem to be marked in a more user-friendly way - making the construction process easier - but - older sewing patterns showcased designs and construction techniques more closely associated with "fine" sewing.
Certainly, there are fine and well-thought-out pattern designs today - but in comparing patterns old and new... I think the small, careful design/style details are what make the older patterns outstanding. The simplification of style may have occurred due to a) fashion trends of the late 1960s onward, or b) a shift in the type of people sewing their own clothing, or c) more readily-available and inexpensive mass-produced clothing.
How about you... do you ever read a sewing pattern just for the fun of it, without any intention to sew the described garment? Have you noticed distinct changes in sewing pattern presentation or directions - or perhaps seen direction features you miss seeing included in the patterns of today?