The minute BioWare decided to lock the rating mod into artifact items, they should have ensured that equal mods are available.
Or they have and they simply havn't dropped yet. TORHead has mods in their database that match those found in the Operations gear that are mod locked, but do not have locations for them yet. Usually this means they are in the data files but nobody has verified where they drop.
Further to that, mods don't help those who actually like these armor skins. Which is another point addressed by my sugestions.
For those that like the skins of the mod locked items...I cant see how there is a problem. From what I have seen, they are modded up to match with who should be wearing them anyway. Whats the problem?
Nor do dropping mods get us any further from Emmanual's "boot farming" problem.
Only if you close your eyes and put your fingers in your ears. If they follow the WoW design of having certain bosses drop certain types of mods then they still make it worth going through an entire Operation, rather than just farming the first boss. Hilts/Barrels would be on the final boss, for example, since they make the most difference.