Not sure if this has already been stated, so forgive me if it has.
This isn't a bug, but a gameplay mechanic. It has no effect at all on gameplay. When starting a battle hold the right mouse key and turn away from your opponents. When the fight starts, you will face away from your enemies. Looks strange seeing your backside in the panaramic camera views.
Also.... If there is any chance of mapping auto-run to clicking the mouse wheel I would greatly appreciate it!!!