I don't see this as being as much of a direct problem for residential users. What I find disturbing are the comments being made by telco CEOs in an obvious attempt to lay a framework for legislation. Gems like:
"We have to make sure that they [application providers] don't sit on our network and chew up bandwidth," Seidenberg (Verizon CEO) said. "We need to pay for the pipe."
"Now what they would like to do is use my pipes free, but I ain't going to let them do that because we have spent this capital and we have to have a return on it," says Whitacre. (AT&T CEO) "So there's going to have to be some mechanism for these people who use these pipes to pay for the portion they're using. Why should they be allowed to use my pipes?"
So, if you have any knowledge of the complexity of the Internet, you already know that Google and other hosts out there are already paying for service. You and I, on the other end of a TCP/IP connection, are already paying for our service. Who, exactly, is "sitting on the network, chewing up bandwidth" or "using the pipes for free?" Currently, it's the same for any other protocol being used on the Internet. Both parties are paying for service, on whatever scale they use it. Peering arrangements are made between ISPs to ensure they can mutually provide for their users.
The real issue here is that these companies have seen just how much money they can milk out of a 3G-capable cell phone, and they want to extend that plunder to what they know is going to be the ultimate service of the next 100 years as people drop cable and home phone service for Hulu and VoIP.