I honestly don't think the general public give a crap whether the film is set before or after Nemesis as none of them went to see it and the ones that did probably don't remember it.
Moreover, couldn't they just have uh... made a story that doesn't require knowledge of continuity to understand instead of erasing all the continuity?
I genuinely do not understand at all how anybody could say the reboot was entirely necessary. As if any casual moviegoer seriously sat there not wanting to see JJ-Trek, until they were told that it contained a major timeline alteration, at which point they were suddenly booking their tickets. It just doesn't make sense. Nobody views movies like that, despite what Abrams says in interviews.
The public went to see JJ-Trek because it had a huge marketing push, a good looking cast of traditional action blockbuster heroes, lots of effects and lots of action. They don't give a shit either way whether it's set the generation before or after TNG.