I was just on Holland America’s Zaandam before the shutdown. There was no fee to use the Crows Nest then, nor has there been anytime I’ve sailed with HAL. Cunard’s ships also all have forward facing lounges, and none of them charge a fee.
I’ve done multiple segments of world cruises and never noticed any issues - except once, when I did a segment on the final world cruise of the old SS Rotterdam. I sat near a woman in the Smoking Room and said hello, and she answered “I’m sorry, but I don’t speak to segmenters.” Some would have been offended. I was delighted, knowing I’d dine out on that story for decades. As I have.