I do believe that there's some hypocrisy at play and many don't admit what they actually did. If you ask the same question to a very close friend, you might get a more personal and honest answer.
In my opinion, you do need to have a good conceptual understanding of the ITTOs. You simply cannot memorize all the ITTOs. However, if you find certain nuances, which aren't obvious to you, you might want to take a (mental) note of them before the exam. Is this called memorization? I don't know.
I decided to conduct a new survey to solicit readers' opinion on this matter. Go ahead and express your opinion and also find out what others think about this. The survey is totally anonymous and nobody is going to send you hate-mail if you answer one way or the other. So, be honest.