Another question: the DS9 series is the next weekly, and we've been told they're hold it until the game goes F2P, presumably so it looks like the game isn't completely dead when new players arrive. Question being: will new players even be able to see that series? Isn't the who sector with DS9 locked out until you level up a bit? So newbies won't be able to go to DS9 in the first place?
No only the sector with the borg and the sector with the breen are locked out until you hit certain levels everywhere else is always open.