So, I did it. Today I purchased the FON social router. I figure, if nothing else, I get a cheap WRT54GL router. If it works out to be a cool service then that's great.
A couple complaints: the process was a little hokey. I had to create an account on the site which included my address. Then during checkout I had to enter my address once (twice?) more. Some of the language in the checkout process was in Spanish and some in English even though my account is clearly selected with English as my "preferred language". And...they use paypal for their order fulfillment. Something about sending me to paypal to pay a bill to them seemed bad. Oh well.
The last problem I noticed was this one:
Your order will arrive in approximately 3 weeks.
Well, for a subsidized router that gives me entree to the world's largest wifi network I guess 3 weeks is a short time to wait.
When I do finally get the device, I plan on signing up as a "Linus" meaning that I won't get any money from people who pay to use my access point, but I'll get to use the worldwide FON network for free. More on that decision later...