There's a fine line between throttling certain types of traffic by default and giving preference.
Smart algorithms can make limited bandwidth work better for everyone. Most of us do something like this ourselves. We'll limit upload speed on a torrent so we can keep surfing. We'll set a a lower priority on a download to get something else done quicker.
An intelligent algorithm that says "Hey, everyone's eating some shit here, non-realtime applications have to eat shit first..." is actually a reasonably fair way of dealing with this. If it takes you 30 seconds longer to download a song from itunes your frustration is going to be far smaller than the frustration of someone watching a youtube video that stutters 15 times for 2 seconds each.
I'm a Cox customer, and I'm fine with it. You can get your pandora stream now, and I'll be patient on the new Chiodos album. I'll get my Lost streamed first, and that funny video your lesbian aunt sent of her 10 cats can wait a little longer.