Here's a user campaign on Linden Lab's JIRA bug tracking software to bring last name options back to SL. If you want to join that push (launched on JIRA by Harlow Heslop), log in with your SL info, click More Actions, then click Add Vote, and also Watch Issue. (As pictured above.) I first saw this campaign noted on Daniel Voyager's blog, where there's a good conversation about why this is a good idea (though some think it's too late to change.) Also interesting advice on using the JIRA: "If you want to influence Linden Lab then one needs to WATCH the JIRA item," Nalates Urriah argues there. "Votes are nice but Lindens have said they only pay attention to the number of Watches." I'm not sure if it's possible to go back to the old way, where new users choose from a batch of surnames, which are then gradually eliminated and replaced with another batch. However, I sure think there has to be a better solution than what we have now, where for reasons that confuse me to the point of brain lock, new users get "Resident" as a default name, then get dot-filled usernames instead.
Update, 1:05PM: Arwyn Quandry has a good post on the case against the current naming method, pointing out it leads to discrimination against new users.