As you may know, Danah Boyd is also on the Advisory Board.
She's also posting an entry on her take on the recent changes. Executive summary: she wasn't consulted (or rather, she was asked what she thought a while back and said why she thought it was a bad idea and thought that was the end of it).
She also made the point that without a lot of readers, she wouldn't be motivated to produce content, in which case why bother keeping up her paid account. So even if Basic Account users only read but rarely write, they can still indirectly affect the choice of Paid Account holders to stay and to keep renewing their accounts. It's all an ecology, and you can't look at people as individuals, because their decisions depend on many other people and not just what's in it for them.
I've read over it twice, but I still can't find the bit where they say, "We're sorry for not telling you in advance". Perhaps someone can point it out to me. The closest I could find was,
Overnight you also raised legitimate concerns about how this change was unveiled - message received, loud and clear. We're still working out how to strike just the right tone when communicating with such a diverse and complex collection of communities.
I also can't find the bit where they say, "We were less than direct [or: we're sorry we lied to you] when we told your our motives for this change, when we said it was about reducing confusion for users signing up for the site". What they say is,
Over the past 24 hours many of you have asked whether the changes to the account structure (removing the option of creating new basic accounts) is a business decision. It is, emphatically.
And finally, they talk a lot about how they'll be building on LiveJournal's heritage and asking for the support of their users without going into details such as what influence the Advisory Board's input will have on their decisions (or whether they'll even be consulted). Go read leora's comment on the entry.