It's understandable that a second big announcement would get lost amid the flurry of F2P frenzy, especially since it was packaged in with the F2P announcement itself. However, now that things have settled somewhat, it's important to recognize a significant leadership change at Turbine. Kate Paiz has taken over as Executive Producer for the title, following in Jeffrey Steefel's footsteps, who has moved on to a new project at Turbine.
According to her introduction letter, Paiz worked as a producer for both There.com and DDO, and helped to supervise the latter's transition into its successful hybrid F2P model. This experience will be invaluable for LotRO's new evolution, and she couldn't be happier: "Given my background, it's hardly surprising that I believe very strongly in the power of providing gamers with a choice in how they pay and play our games." Considering that one of her first public acts as Executive Producer was to handle the bombardment of interviews and forum questions about LotRO's upcoming model, one could say that her new position was forged in the fires of Mt. Doom itself.