In terms of increased marksmanship proficiency most ammunition expended by civilian and military folks is largely wasted.

In this context, “wasting” means failing to gain skill or doing so in an inefficient manner. Naturally, some folks will probably take offense at that statement (likely, because it applies to them.) Before you vent your spleen consider how shooting skills are measured.

Most military personnel are not marksmanship enthusiasts, go to the range by order, and are lead through staid courses by other non-marksmen. The concepts of the course of fire are often lost due to being interpreted by personnel who may not have ever read the appropriate Field Manual or regulation directing the training. Many police officers fit this same description.

Outside of the competitive realm civilian gun owners don’t even have this much. Hunter’s Education and basic safety courses are the limit of most gun owner’s knowledge.

If you prefer to plink, please, have at it. Some people just like to hear the gun go bang. If your goal is to have fun and you can discharge firearms without injury or damaging property then have a good time. Just don’t pretend that such random activity will somehow convey good shooting skills. At least not unless you are willing and able to occasionally measure skills against some viable yard stick.