I am someone who believes you can’t live without design, even if you try, you can’t avoid it. Everything has had some consideration to how works, how it looks, or even just how it fits into an environment. Infographics are often taken for granted. They hold a stigma that they’re boring, often ugly, and hard to understand. But now they are a thing of beauty, something you could hang on your wall proudly and look at all day. So in reality, I agree with both points of this question. They hold a purpose because they still hold data, they still inform, but in a more interesting way than the more conventional, bar charts and graphs of old. Just because something is considered beautiful doesn’t mean it can’t also hold a function. Hold a reason for its creation. If anything the beauty of infographics now, pull people in, even if they weren’t interested the unusual layout, patterns, colours, draw people in so the function and aesthetics work together.
Come to think of it, I think the two can’t work without each other. Obviously an infographic has to be functional but without being aesthetically pleasing it won’t hold the readers attention, or won’t stick in their mind.