I'm glad it's not just me , and like bud said I would like help . If you don't have it don't post . That other post was uncalled for
When you connect to the free wifi using your computer [PC/Mac desktop, laptop] after finding/connecting to the Free Wifi access point, then run your web browser, are not you greeted by a web page to which you have to accept the terms of services? If so, this is why your PS3 can't connect to the access point, for the PS3 has not accepted the terms of service. These type of access point connection negotiations don't work with the PS3.
For free wifi access points, specially one offered by a city or any company, this portal are normal for it free them of any liability, informs you of how they handle their access point and makes you liable for others. Them being in control of the access point allows them to see all that you do in their network, as well as, block network services [to protect themselves] & force certain network behavior.
Getting your PS3 Online [Bridge Connection]
You can always use your laptop/PC as a medium to bring internet access to your PS3. Connect your computer to the free access point, run your browser and accept the term of service [navigate around to make sure you can surf the net] then it is time to bridge the connection
NOTE: You can do this with apple or linux machine but I just happen to have a windows machine. If you don't have a windows machine then just search the interwebs for instructions on how to bridge a connection for your OS.
Here we go.
-Connected a regular cat5e ethernet cable from the computer to the PS3
-Then on windows go to Network & Sharing Center. To get here go to Control Panel\Network and Internet\Network and Sharing Center
-Now on the right hand side of the window click on Change Adapter Settings.
-Here, while holding the Ctrl key on the key board, using the mouse you will select both of the connection you want to bridge. Then right click on top of the selection and select Bridge Connections
-After a couple of seconds the connection will get bridge and a new connection called Network Bridge should appear.
-Now on the PS3 go to: Settings/Network Settings/Internet Connection Settings
Select a Setting method: Do Not use the Easy option. Select Custom and move on.
Select a Connection Method: Select Wired Connection
Select the operation mode of the network device: Auto-Detect
IP Address Settings: Automatic
DNS Settings: Automatic
Proxy Server: Do Not Use
UPnP: Enable This will only affect the connection between your PS3 and your laptop/pc. Remember, you are still subject to the free wifi access point firewall.
-Now save the setting and Test the connection.
Let us know how it goes.