Yeah, the free to lv15 thing is still up as far as I know and won't go away until they implement the full F2P system.
As for the rest... I don't get why it's BioWare's fault that SWG failed. If anything it was SOE's fault and LucasArts fault for letting it happen with their inaction... which has been their trademark for years.
I also don't get the whole thing when people say that swtor is just like any other mmo... cause if it was, I wouldn't be playing it. It's more accurate to say that swtor is a BioWare RPG wrapped in an MMO shell... and that's how I approached this game this entire time. I don't like MMO's... I still don't. The fact that this is an MMO is overshadowed by the fact that it's a BioWare RPG and that there are 8 different class stories to go through which all tie together in some way and tell a larger story.
I avoided swg like the plague... despite the fact that it had space combat and all this stuff that swtor doesn't have (at least at the moment)... I was also one of the people who wanted kotor 3 over this initially. I'm also the one who convinced mim to buy into this game despite him absolutely refusing to initially
I think whatever disappointment this game has caused in terms of profits and fan support, I've thankfully been able to avoid that because I approached this game a certain way that didn't pile on the expectations of other games onto it but simply judged the game as it is, by itself.
I do this with every game btw, even though I can spot similarities, etc with a lot of games. Judge a game on its own merits or not at all... at least for me.