I've had this dropping to 1x or no data a few times. Usually it doesn't last long and hasn't been a huge inconvenience or anything. If I turn data off and then on it fixes itself.
I live in a 3g town, hope to be 4g soon, and travel to a 4g town frequently. The dropping of data seems to happen randomly in both areas. In the 4g town, I sometimes drop to just 3g. In the 3g town I sometimes just drop to 1x.
I like the idea about calling *611 and complaining a lot. Yay for credit! I think I'll be doing that.