U.S. regulators advanced a proposal to let Internet-service providers led by AT&T Inc. and Comcast Corp. offer fast lanes for payment from Web companies such as Google Inc. and Facebook Inc.
Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler had enough reluctant support from his two fellow Democrats to win a 3-2 preliminary vote for his proposal, which advocacy groups and Internet companies said undermines the ‘net-neutrality’ ideal of treating Web traffic equally. Wheeler revised the proposal May 12 to add consideration of tougher regulations, including potential rate controls, under the agency’s review.
The vote opens a comment-and-review period intended to lead to a second vote and a final rule later this year. A court in January threw out open-Internet rules the FCC adopted in 2010.