Following a public backlash, FCC chairman Tom Wheeler is backtracking a bit on rule changes (floated last month) that would allow U.S. ISPs to charge content providers for access to a priority "fast lane."
A new draft of Wheeler's plan seeks comment on whether such arrangements, referred to as "paid prioritization," should be banned. It also states the FCC will scrutinize deals with content providers to make sure non-payers aren't at a disadvantage, prevent ISPs from doing deals with varying terms, and (notably) seek comment on whether broadband should be regulated as a public utility.
Netflix (NFLX +3.2%), whose bandwidth spend accounts for a sizable portion of its expenses, is higher amid a broader Internet stock rally. The streaming giant has struck direct peering deals with Comcast and Verizon this year, but has also made it clear it's not thrilled with having to make them.
Cogent (CCOI +2.2%), which provides peering services for Netflix and many others, is also higher. Its shares tumbled after the Netflix-Comcast deal was announced.