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Robert Longley

Bill Would Lower TV Commercial Volume

By June 20, 2008

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Have you ever noticed how some TV commercials sound louder than the programs you are watching? U.S. Rep. Anna G. Eshoo (D-California, 14th) has noticed, says it's done on purpose, finds it annoying and has introduced a bill to make it stop.

Rep. Eshoo's Commercial Advertisement Loudness Mitigation Act, or CALM, would order the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to create and enforce federal regulations requiring that television advertisements not be excessively noisy.

"Most Americans are not overjoyed to watch television commercials, but they are willing to tolerate them to sustain free over-the-air television," said Eshoo in her introductory remarks. "What annoys all of us is the sudden increase of volume when commercials are aired."

According the Rep. Eshoo, advertisers too often record their commercials at maximum volume simply to grab the viewer's attention. Her bill (H.R. 6209), would require that commercials be aired at the same volume level as the programs they accompany.

The Commercial Advertisement Loudness Mitigation Act was introduced on June 9, 2008 and has been referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce.

UPDATE (Dec.16, 2009): Rep. Eshoo's bill, now numbered HR 1084 as re-introduced in the 111th Congress, was passed by the House on Dec. 15, 2009. The bill is now before the Senate.

Also See: Federal Regulations: Laws Behind the Acts

Comments

June 21, 2008 at 11:00 am
(1) Kimberly says:

I am not a big fan of excessive legislation, and it would be nice if the broadcast and cable television community would police themselves and their sponsors. However, I do like the intent of this bill. Some movies (usually dramas) have a lot of low volume dialogue that is hard to follow without turning the volume up a little. Then the commercials come on and blow you away. It is not just that this is irritating, but it could potentially damage my speakers. The possibility that the extreme volume of some commercials could cause permanent damage to the viewers’ audio equipment, or even young ears, is a good reason for the government to step in.

May 2, 2011 at 6:21 pm
(2) pat says:

Please press forward on this issue.. ESPN, is so loud that I put the tv on mute during the comercials

May 9, 2011 at 2:44 pm
(3) Tes says:

Ok Kimberly, so you’re the one American who actually enjoys the annoyance of these commercials. The rest of us want the advertising agencies to know…all you’re doing is guaranting I won’t buy your product, simply because you’ve intentionally tried to aggervate me!

September 18, 2011 at 12:46 pm
(4) Stan & Marcia Gootee says:

It was our understanting and the aggreeement made that all of the “HIGH VOLUME” Commercials were going to have to go to the “same volume” as the program we are watching. We have been patiently waiting for this to happen for the last two (2) months thinking it was the aggreement made. Obviously it has not taken place and was never an aggreement they made with the “real consumers” of this country. Now, it appears, after doing some checking on here, this FAKE AGREEMENT was never intended to take place.
WHO REALLY CONTROLS THIS TYPE OF THING??? THE PEOPLE THE COMMERSIALS ARE TARGETING,OUR GOVERNMENT AND THE COMPANIES THAT RUN THE COMMERCIALS?
This is a very sad state since the families that spent the past and give the most, with their soldiers have to put up with this and no one in power has to answer for it honestly and truthfully!!!

June 28, 2008 at 5:17 pm
(5) Peter says:

This bill would be as welcome as the Do Not Call List. Advertisers once again insult our intelligence by thinking that BLASTING US WITH OBNOXIOUS NOISE will get us to by their products. All it does is encourage me to time-shift my programs more often, hit the mute button, or simply change the channel or turn the box off.

Which makes their original intent completely useless.

June 29, 2008 at 5:34 am
(6) Salocin.TEN says:

I thought Leo Laporte mentioned and saw for himself from the TechTV control rooms that television commercials are broadcast on a single sound channel.

Their volume levels are actually the same, but the single channel makes everything sound louder.

July 9, 2008 at 10:19 pm
(7) ryan says:

if using a single channel makes them sound like that then maybe they should change to a duel channel.

July 13, 2008 at 1:19 am
(8) Claire says:

I agree that this is an issue for TV viewers. I hate commercials (mainly B/C of their annoyance factor)!! Commercials seem to have become some peoples’ only source of “reality”. But I feel that an unfortunately large number of American’s are oblivious to the overly loud, ignorant-type commercials…they may
never know that this product even exist, or that it’s a may help to salvaging what little culture this country has left

July 22, 2008 at 7:54 pm
(9) Tim says:

They should call this “the Billy Mays retirement act”!

August 12, 2008 at 7:06 pm
(10) Mike says:

“Most Americans are not overjoyed to watch television commercials, but they are willing to tolerate them to sustain free over-the-air television,”

Now that we pay (through the nose) for cable telivision, what is their excuse for having to tolerate them?

October 15, 2008 at 11:34 am
(11) Gary says:

should not this be invasion of privacy? how did it even get started to begin with?

October 29, 2008 at 10:07 pm
(12) Marcus says:

Thank Goodness! but the regulation should be enforced on all broadcasters, not the makers of the ad. It would be much easier to mandate that broadcasters regulate a maximum broadacsted volume based on the average volume of the accompanying programming. With the advent of digital broadcasting, there is no reason that a simple piece of software could not manage the task. Enforcement would be easier (since broadcasters must be licensed already).
Bottom Line: I’d vote for the people who pass this bill, and I’d boycott the companies who oppose it.

November 22, 2008 at 7:07 pm
(13) Bryan says:

Sorry to tell everyone this but the bill is fatally flawed right from the gate. For those that don’t know I am in the industry and I hate the way commercials are produced. Explanation: FCC regulates volume from a minimum to maximum for programs. This also already applies to commercials as well. Your program will be controlled my multiple audio tracks put together with different levels. Gunshots screams, car wrecks are on the high level while the rest is on a lower average so that you get that “Feeling” especially for those with surround sound. Commercials knew the regulations were coming and now are already within the limits…they place ALL the audio on the high level “monotone” track making them seem REALLY loud. This is provable by placing a decibel meter on your coffee table, watch an action adventure flick and look at max level. Then as you hear the commercial, look at your meter it will not be higher. This is where we need to make te commercial MAX equal the average of your sow and you will not have that sudden blast on your ears that seems like they cranked the volume up. I know all of this because I work on audio for commercials and trust me I hate the game they play trying to get your attention with the audio tracks.

November 30, 2008 at 9:28 pm
(14) Deborah says:

If the television stations, cable companies and advertisers aren’t willing to regulate themselves, then we need to put legislation in place. I’m tired of scrambling for my Mute button every time a commercial blasts onto my television. I’ve worked in advertising for over 30 years and I know you can’t annoy a person into buying your product. But you sure as hell can annoy them into muting their TV so their hear nothing of your message. (Corporations should fire their agencies for doing this. How many GRPs are you really getting if people turn off the sound?)

December 5, 2008 at 12:50 am
(15) Dan Ellis says:

I’m excited to hear there is proposed legislation to address this nuisance. What can we do to help ensure the legislation becomes law?

Thanks,

Dan

December 7, 2008 at 10:24 am
(16) Jim TN says:

We all need to send an email to our represenatives to tell them to support this. I sat here during the political campaigns thinking that whoever would say that they would levelize TV volume for comercials, would get my vote. I actually think that some of the sound levels can destroy my speakers. My wife has very good hearing and mine is poor (due to working is high volume areas) she is already listening to a high volume for her and then the comercials blast you right our of your chair. The comercials that are at these loud volumes actually turn me away from their products. I have noticed that the louder the volume the lower the quality of the product advertised. Maybe the government can tax them. Maby $10 million per second per decibel. This might help pay for the medicare medical bills for the hearing loss which is caused.

December 23, 2008 at 7:43 pm
(17) Ian Abercrombie says:

The big problem is that blasting the commercials works. The average listener is not going to turn the volume off they are only likely to moan about it a bit but the are very likely to remember the commercial whether they like it or not. Remembering the commercial and the product is half way to buying it.
What we need to do is to make our displeasure known to the broadcasters every time we are hit with this abuse. If we deluge them with complaints perhaps they will take notice.
I would love to see legislation control this but I am not holding my breadth.

January 25, 2011 at 12:42 am
(18) NanaRe says:

Complaining alone will not do the job. First: MUTE THE AD, Second, DON’T WATCH THE AD (good time to read a few paragraphs of a book or magazine), but Third: DO NOT BUY WHAT THEY’RE ADVERTISING. If purchases go DOWN, they might scratch their head and think, “Hmmm, loud advertising isn’t working”. I only listen to and watch the ads that are at the same volume level as the programming I’m watching.

January 4, 2009 at 11:44 pm
(19) nikos k. says:

i am preparing a class action suit against the broadcasters.
pass the word and if some one starts a roll-call it will help. please see:
Commercial Advertisement Loudness Mitigation Act, US Congress, H.R. 6209

January 14, 2009 at 11:50 pm
(20) Lori Martin says:

Can we sue them if the speakers on our televisions get blown because of the way they air there commercials ???

January 21, 2009 at 10:27 pm
(21) fred zupp says:

everyone complains about volume during commercials, it takes too long to change the law, the FCC should have done this years ago.It will take at least 10 years to ever change anything, and that would be quick with the FCC

February 1, 2009 at 12:13 am
(22) Chris says:

I don’t think the bill will pass its to much money. As a consumer living in the land of capitalist it is our duty to complain when companies attempt to trick and manipulate us. We can fix this on our own. Perhaps taking out an ad in a Sunday paper listing companies that have chosen this advertising strategy. And call for a boycott of those companies products or services. Its a small step but its in the right direction. Remember as technology advances so will the manipulation of the consumer. If we can put an end to it now. Our futures wont be preprogrammed.

February 28, 2009 at 11:29 pm
(23) Loren Pine says:

My wife and I fully support legistration to limit volume on commercials. We would like to believe that the industry would regulate itself, but it very evident that it will not becuase the dollar reigns. We simply mute every commerical, not matter what the volume. It’s our way of fighting back at those who insult and assult us.

March 21, 2009 at 9:37 pm
(24) Bonnie and Jim Morris says:

I have good hearing while my husband does not. Typically even with his hearing aide the volume on regular shows is louder than what I would like. We simply mute out most commercials before they even start. Whenever we forget to do this, I almost come out of my chair! We very seldom watch commericals; you would certainly think that adveritisers would understand that their message is not being received. I think commercials should only be allowed to broadcast and 75% of the highest volume allowed for regular television shows.
Thanks

June 12, 2009 at 1:07 pm
(25) TP says:

I would be more likely to watch commercials with regulated volume. As it is now, I fast-forward through them because they are so “jarring” and loud. Too bad the advertisers couldn’t do this without legislation- now it will cost the taxpayers to impose common sense, but I believe it’s worth it and I support it!

June 12, 2009 at 1:08 pm
(26) TP says:

IT’s about time! Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!

June 13, 2009 at 6:58 pm
(27) Paul Solomon says:

I’m sitting in my barcalounger eating Cheese Doodles and watching the “NCIS” marathon on the USA channel. It’s Saturday, and I’m taking the day off. I don’t want to be distracted by having to make decisions or pay bills on the weekend. But now, as another commercial comes on, I’m thinking to myself, “enough already, there ought to be a law.” I reach for the remote to turn down the volume. Is it just me, or is the commercial way louder than the regular programming? Yes and no. It seems broadcasters are allowed to air commercials at a volume equal to the peak volume of the program during which they play. For instance, there’s a loud bomb blast in an episode of our favorite show. All the commercials during that program can reach that level. In other words, the commercial is constantly running at the loudest volume possible, while the actual show balances the explosions with dialogue at a natural level. The shows have a realistic pattern of volume that ranges from whispering to loud dialogue to loud blasts, while the commercials constantly blare at the peak volume. This issue has confounded TV viewers for years, and is now being investigated by the U.S. Congress, which this week heard from experts on the subject while considering HR 1084, the Commercial Advertisement Loudness Mitigation Act (CALM). The appropriately named CALM Act would require the FCC to restrict television commercial volume to the average sound level of the program that it airs on, as opposed to the program’s peak volume. As I keep having to reach for the remote during each commercial interruption, I’m comforted by the fact that the day of the ear-blasting announcements for male enhancement products, AARP membership and bipolar medication is coming to an end. Soon there could be a law.

June 29, 2009 at 4:40 pm
(28) jake says:

what an incredible waste of time and paper for them to even propose this bill…

talk about excessive meddling and legislating…

like our government can’t think of something better to do than to tell TV stations to turn down commercials? wow!

July 7, 2009 at 9:58 pm
(29) Gordon says:

There has been a difference between the programmed show and commercial broadcast volumes for some time however it has recently been increased. It is definitively too high now to the point where my household will cancel our cable service.

July 19, 2009 at 11:27 am
(30) Pip says:

Bryan, it still wont matter. If a commercial is aired that even seems louder than the program, it will have to be mixed down. Billy Mays commercials will basically be tossed into the bin as this because none of those commercial will even come close to a “reasonable volume”. If it’s loud and obnoxious, it will have to be toned down regardless what a decibel meter tells us.

I’m watching Le Tour De France right now on VS, and they keep going to sports commercials that are so over the top loud it’s annoying. The live coverage is not very loud at all, so all the commercials in the future will have to be very very very quiet.

Thank you!

October 1, 2009 at 12:53 pm
(31) Jo Fickbohm says:

I would love to see a bill passed to lower the volumn of commercials. Why should I have to hit the silent button every 9 minutes for comfort to my ears, in my own home?? Have you ever had a committee or volunteers, to obtain enough signatures of people to get some action. I would think that ad sponsers would like viewers to listen, and I would if it didn’t blast my hearing aids. Yes, the ads are annoying in themselves but I realize they pay for the station, but wouldn’t they hope that viewers would listen to them instead of pushing the silence button.

October 16, 2009 at 1:41 am
(32) Stephen Dolle says:

The practice by networks and TV cable carriers in elevating the volume of your TV during commercials have been escalating. As an advocate and scientist in the area of neurological disorders, I know that this practice exacerbates neurological and behaviorial complaints for millions of childrens, teens, and adults across the county with disorders ranging from autism to tumor, migraine, post TBI, developmental, and other disorders, including, PTSD among soldiers returning from combat. The sudden increase in volume becomes a “trigger” and overwhelmes the central nervous system’s sensory processing.

For these individuals, it is important to moderate visual, auditory, and and the other sensory stimuli. In addition, such individuals have disability protections as TV viewers to be free from endangering and exacerbating conditions that can make them ill.

AND as has been established by Congress and the Americans with Disability Act, these handicapped viewers are entitled to “reasonable accomodations” to be free from unhealthful conditions created by TV broadcasters and networks, and further some type of intervention to assure they are no longer subjected to these unhealthful practices.

No matter what transpires with the above “bill,” this practice will see some form of legal intervention and order to protect the above class of handicapped persons from the above-described harm and injury.

October 20, 2009 at 1:11 pm
(33) MB Cloud says:

When I was a kid, back in the early 60′s, I remember a bill in congress that was passed to control commercial volume. Did this bill go away with de-regulation?

October 28, 2009 at 11:19 pm
(34) Me Chetos says:

I will not watch tv anymore then, remember we will never beat the rich people they have the power to shut up these fcc bill or whatever is called.

i’m more into movies than tv programs for the same reazon.

if i watch a tv program I’m always prepared with my mute buton ready, ready like waiting for a target with my riffle to kill it but i don’t need to aim LOL.

November 10, 2009 at 10:57 pm
(35) Bonnie says:

This bill can not pass fast enough. Blasting us out of our own living room has to stop! I just turned of the darn tv because it was too loud when the commercials came on. Also, I notice the commercials seem to last forever. I lose interest in the program, scan channels and then forget what station I was on and never seem to watch a whole program. I would rather watch a dvd or catch the current shows online the day after they air. 30 second commercials, I can watch an hour program in about 40 – 45 minutes.

November 20, 2009 at 4:33 pm
(36) Irishlass says:

Is there any updated information regarding the bill to lower TV ads? How many people have suffered a heart attack by being jolted awake by a loud commercial?
It is a year since posts began and commercials are still blaring away.

November 20, 2009 at 6:43 pm
(37) usgovinfo says:

Rep. Eshoo’s bill, now numbered HR 1084 as re-introduced in the 111th Congress, was reported (approved) by the House Committee on Energy and Commerce on Nov. 19, 2009, thus clearing the way for the bill’s consideration by the full House.

November 20, 2009 at 10:04 pm
(38) jim says:

There is nothing more annoying than not having the ability to watch a TV program without having to carry the remote in my pocket so I can avoid what might just as well be loud noise. Even if the commercial were something I might be interested in I would not hear it. It’s not the volumn that sells the product its listening to the presentation of something presented in a manner to hold the attention of the viewer long enough to convience the viewer of the merits of the product. There is enough pollution outdoors without forcing it into our homes.

December 9, 2009 at 10:25 pm
(39) David Clark says:

I echo the voices who detest government involvement in our life’s. HOWEVER this is verbal abuse!!! Some have commented this is counterproductive as I and many others hit the mute button, so even if I might be interested I will not be blown out of my seat.

I remember Leo discussing this, albeit a year ago. Look we need to get on the phone, send emails, and ask our friends and family to do the same.

We shut down the Amnesty bill with overwhelming contacts, THIS is NOTHING compared to what Bush AND the Dem’s wanted to do. If we beat them we can sure as hell beat Madison Ave!!!!

December 15, 2009 at 2:28 pm
(40) Jeff says:

Why not have the cable companies broadcast their programming sound to be equal to commercials and we can just turn down our volume altogheter.

December 17, 2009 at 10:48 am
(41) Wayne says:

I think the government has more to worry about than passing a bill on volume of commercials. I find it offensive that the government thinks that we the people are not competent enough or smart enough to push the volume down button on the remote or on the tv itself

December 17, 2009 at 1:45 pm
(42) Al Phresceaux says:

This has been a problem for decades and I would like to see it fixed. Some people say it is a waste of Congress’ time, but this is the only issue affecting our lives that Congress can be trusted with.

December 18, 2009 at 10:41 am
(43) Aubrey says:

I have never entered anything on line before so here goes.
I heard a brief comment on news recently that the volume on commercials will now be same as regular programing. Is this true? If so when will it take affect.

December 18, 2009 at 10:53 am
(44) usgovinfo says:

Aubry: TV stations, cable and satellite TV providers have always been free to install equipment ensuring that commercials run at the same or lower volume than regular programming. In light of the probable passage of the CALM
Act, some are starting to do so now.

Robert

December 21, 2009 at 10:19 pm
(45) Pattydi says:

people hear certain frequencies better than others
so advertisers use these frequencies.
years ago when the same complaint was put forward advertisers used these frequencies more that you would find in normal conversation so even tho the sound is equal it is going to sound LOUDER! that was years ago and the ads now are even louder! please MAKE it stop!!

December 23, 2009 at 12:44 am
(46) Lily says:

I can’t believe the people who are saying this is a waste of time or money, or that we should all keep our remotes ready! I mean who wants to grab the remote or hold it the whole time, we don’t know when the commercial is going to start! They need to do what others above have said, and only be allowed to be as loud as the average sound on the show that is airing. When people sit down to watch a show or a movie, they don’t expect to have to grab the remote at random moments – fast – in order to be able to watch it when others sleeping in bedrooms are trying to sleep!

December 25, 2009 at 7:32 pm
(47) David says:

Finally, a common sense piece of legislation! As consumers what can we do! I think it should extend to Internet commercial advertising as well! The DURACELL commercial before viewing CNN content is ridiculously loud! Consumers HATE the manipulation of volume and you would think the media would figure out that MOST people MUTE the commercials, which is NOT in their interest because they ARE obnoxiously loud!

December 27, 2009 at 7:58 pm
(48) Jim Brennan says:

Finally something might happen, I am so sick and tire of turning the volume up and down. We should be in control of when enters owe home no mater what it is.

It’s the same as having a sales man knocking @ your door ever five minutes. I support this bill, just wish it were more public as far as advertising it. Um i wounder why theirs not a loud commercial for passing this bill??

January 1, 2010 at 1:51 pm
(49) D Burnett says:

PLEASE stop loud tv commercials!

January 2, 2010 at 11:02 am
(50) Jim Carlyle says:

Imagine a commercial you wanted to hear and you are so infuriated with the sound level that you refuse to buy the product. How stupid and ignorant are advertisers. Now this is being done at the ball games on their giant monitors blasting you out of the stadium. I get so annoyed I can’t remember what’s going on during the football game. Yes I am the king of Mute and will continue to mute until the volume is reduced.

January 3, 2010 at 2:22 pm
(51) WTLynch says:

I am absolutley freaked by this whole thing and that anyone but the TV viewer should have the right to regulate the volumn of anything that comes into his/her home on thier own TV. What gives anyone else the right to set those controls! Not only should the volumn remain the same for anything that is viewed, programs or commercials, but all channel volumns should be the same!. We, the home owner and owner of the TV, should have the right to decide the level of noise that we want to be sublected to!!!

January 4, 2010 at 12:18 pm
(52) NEH says:

Commercials should be the same sound level as the regular program, period, stop them from being annoying. Seeing how there are more comercials to have to listen to. As far as what is said about free TV, see above comment, please let me know where I can have that? Antenas are out now with the HD era, and reception in my area is cable or satelite or add a pay for youself box to use your old antena. Something also should be done with the the rates charged by these companies for their service or non service they say they provide.

January 5, 2010 at 11:51 pm
(53) phil says:

i used to watch and listen to them. now i mute them and play on my laptop. too bad about the recession, means we see the same commercial up to 3 times per break

January 6, 2010 at 5:18 am
(54) Warren says:

I thought I heard about a regulation in the back in the 80′s. Anyway, even if there is a law to limit the volume on commercials all they(TV Stations) would have to do is turn down the volume of the actual program thus making you turn up the volume on your TV. In that case playing the commercial at the regulated volume would still sound really loud. TV stations no longer have manners or maybe that old regulation that i think i remembered expired or was over turned.

January 11, 2010 at 1:04 am
(55) arbitraryrelativist says:

Commercial sound levels louder than the programming has caused deafness in millions of people, especially older people. I don’t buy ANYTHING advertised on television, since this is a sign that most of the money for their products goes for advertising, and I boycott any company whose ads are noticeably louder than the program they sponsor—for *life*. Same goes for companies who use junk mail, telemarketing, and billboards.

January 17, 2010 at 7:15 pm
(56) Angel says:

Commercials are still too loud. Who enforces the CALM ACT???

January 18, 2010 at 7:43 am
(57) usgovinfo says:

Angel – Should the CALM Act pass and become law, it would be enforced by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).

Robert

January 27, 2010 at 10:43 am
(58) Justin says:

Wow, you guys are amazing. All this whining over loud commercials. I think our politicians should be a bit more worried about fixing the economy than they should about introducing trivial nonsense bills such as this simply because a bunch of people who watch too much tv as it is are getting annoyed over loud commercials. How many of you sheep have contacted your politicians in regards to anything affecting your life(loud commercials aside)? I’d be willing to bet very few. But you’ll expend energy complaining about loud commercials? You people make me almost embarrassed to call myself an american. Turn the TV off and get involved in something that’s actually important.

January 27, 2010 at 12:44 pm
(59) dogparkdaddy says:

Increasing the volume of commercials over that of the regularly scheduled programming is an invasion of personal privacy and should be dealt with. When I have the volume at just the right level and then BOOM on comes a loud commercial it can wake up sleeping family members. We should not have to tolerate that.

January 28, 2010 at 3:22 pm
(60) Bob says:

All-State Insurance has a recent ad guaranteed to wake up the dead. It is louder and more intrusive than any other ad on television. (I really wasn’t planning on buying any All-State insurance but, if I were, this ad would surely seal the deal against this company.) I hope this bill becomes law, if the Senate doesn’t kill it as it kills everything else.

February 17, 2010 at 5:18 am
(61) Laurnence says:

An interesting point you may not have thought of. I work in sound, and can tell you there are regulations governing the sound levels aloud to on TV. No advert is recorded louder than they are supposed to be. But there are a lot of programs that are recorded lower than they are suposed to be. It would make more sence (particularly to the hard of hearing) if the programs recorded there avarage sound louder. This would also solve the problem of the jump in volume at the ad breaks.

March 11, 2010 at 8:54 am
(62) Tom says:

Cool. I hope the legislation flies. At one point I had Emailed the FCC in re of this miasmic vexation. I was informed by an astute spokesperson that, in essence, the FCC’s had no hand in this as no code violations are occurring.
I never saw the point in raising the volume for attention. It does indeed get your attention enough to hit the mute button on the remote and sales pitches fall on deaf ears. Mayhaps, in the interim of legislation, marketing personnel will come to realize they may score more sales if they spoke in a normal tone of voice.
Tom

May 1, 2010 at 9:07 pm
(63) Johnny Bob says:

It will never happen, they are too busy regulating other aspects of our lives, but it would be nice.

May 7, 2010 at 10:13 pm
(64) Michael says:

I am really annoyed at the childish resort that some advertisers take. I am of the minority that actually enjoys watching some commercials. Now that it seems the majority of commercials blast the volume, I now just mute them all. In addition, I take note of who advertises in this manner and make sure I don’t purchase from them. I know I’m not the only one who reacts in this manner and hopefully this sends a loud and clear message to the advertisers.

June 27, 2010 at 10:04 am
(65) Catherine says:

I cannot believe it has been since June 9, 2008 since this bill was introduced and IT STILL IS BEING CONSIDERED?
I just wrote to the FCC about a program I was watching the other night, ‘Lady Sings the Blues’ on cable and all of a sudden the commercial came SO LOUD that it scared the heck out of us. This is not an exaggeration either. I wrote to the FCC and they gave me their standard boiler plate PDF to read. It the FCC isn’t doing a thing about this issue.. They never have and never will! Just another branch of our system that needs to be revamped and cleaned up!

July 8, 2010 at 4:11 pm
(66) Amy says:

I don’t think proposing laws is going to do anything. This is a “vote with your feet” proposition. TiVo and cable provider DVR services are going to make television advertising as we know it obsolete. I have a dual channel DVR, so I can watch another channel while the first one is paused. When the commercials come on, I pause the show and watch something else until that show breaks for commercials, then I go back to my paused show, fast forward through the commercial break, and that’s the end of it. I can count the number of actual television commercials I watch per day on one hand. I feel sorry for these companies wasting all that money trying to advertise to me, but the way I figure it, it’s like McDonald’s trying to get you to buy more Big Macs by breaking your legs when you try to leave. The viewing public isn’t just a bunch of research monkeys. If advertisers keep assaulting people just to make a few extra bucks, we’re going to avoid television advertising altogether.

July 31, 2010 at 10:54 pm
(67) ff11 says:

I am tempted to move to California just so I can vote for Rep. Eshoo. It’s about time someone took up this cause.

October 1, 2010 at 11:37 am
(68) J. BROWN says:

Commercials ARE louder than the regular programming. The mute button is one solution, but who wants to have to hit the mute button ever 7 minutes, in order to watch a program? It’s not only annoying, but it makes me intentionally turn against their product or whatever they’re selling. They lose more customers through this practice of loud obnoxious commercials than they gain. We pay more for cable TV and have to watch these unwanted commercials and the companies pay the TV networks to air them. Sounds to me like the only ones making a profit from both sides are the TV networks.

October 1, 2010 at 3:55 pm
(69) M. Mahloch says:

I do believe that we have many more serious issues in this country that our government officials should be worried about. This is such a minor item. Our elected officials need to concentrate on the problems that affect our economy, environment, education and other more pertinant issues.

October 5, 2010 at 9:08 am
(70) richard says:

From the bill:
“the average maximum loudness of such advertisements shall not be substantially higher than the average maximum loudness of the program material that such advertisements accompany.”

The “loudness” of commercials does NOT result from having a higher average maximum loudness. It does result from having a higher average minimum loudness, through the extreme use of compression. This bill (regardless of what one might think of its intentions) fails to understand or deal with the “problem” it’s trying to solve.

October 12, 2010 at 3:55 pm
(71) Dorthy says:

This will be a welcome change, couldn’t be soon enough. Right now I don’t listen to any commercials, I mute all advertisements and unmute when the program starts. Maybe when the advertisements are at the same volume they’ll regain a customer.

December 3, 2010 at 7:19 pm
(72) Michael says:

Sounds good in theory, but will fail in practice. Why? There are different definitions of “average” (arithmetic mean, geometric mean, median, mode to name a few), and commercials will still be able to be much louder than programs and still squeeze by. All they have to do is determine the loudest level of the program (say a gunshot), and start (and maintain) at that level. They will still abide by the letter of the law, yet not the intent.

December 4, 2010 at 9:31 pm
(73) rob chisholm says:

It`s about time. Big corporations have way too much power.

December 4, 2010 at 10:44 pm
(74) NeoGio says:

Thank goodness, this needed to be done.

NJ should do this too.

December 12, 2010 at 5:18 pm
(75) pickles says:

Leave it to a woman and a democrat at that, to come up with such a trivial personal concern that she wastes taxpayer dollars and valuable congressional time to argue something as useless as this bill. Hey, lady, get out of congress if this is at the top of your priorities for this country!

December 18, 2010 at 12:41 am
(76) Lynette says:

AMC showed the original “Miracle on 34th Street” tonight. The commercials were so loud that I had to grab the remote and lower the volume because it was uncomfortable. When the move came back on, I had use the remote again and increase the volume so I could hear the soundtrack. That’s unacceptable.

January 2, 2011 at 8:41 pm
(77) Roger says:

How did they ever get the RIGHT to increase the volume on TV commercials??? I can’t believe some people don’t have a problem with it. I heard that in India, they actually have commercials during movies at the theatre! I suppose you guys would be okay with that, too?

January 19, 2011 at 5:20 pm
(78) Frank says:

I switched over to digital Tv and I find just changing channels is becoming a problem when you are on a local channel and go to cn8 it blast your ear drums, and this not a ad being played. I found also switching over to digital, the volume control of my Tv was cut in half of what it was of switching over to, I tried changing the settings in the cable box but to find locked out on sound settings. I guess the next step return the cable box, as some one stated over the air ads for free TV no so with Cable if anything thing compare AMC movie of 4 hrs you get 219 ads to NBC movies I believe you get less so over the air seems to be better. I asked Comcast what are they doing to cut down on channels having so many ads no answer, I can’t wait till internet TV comes with not Ads and you can chose what channel you want to pay for, cable companies don’t want this choice o well can’t wait mean while go back to renting movies

January 25, 2011 at 12:37 am
(79) NanaRe says:

Since it appears from previous comments that there IS a solution to “muting the ads” to a moderate level, I would think the advertisers would get wise and do it by choice…I for one always MUTE the ad if the volume is louder than the program I’m watching; in addition, I do NOT WATCH the ad just because of the irritation! If they would keep the ad (as a few seem to do) to the level of regular programming, I probably would be watching – and listening – to their ad. By turning the volume UP on their ads, they have defeated the very purpose of advertising!! I hope the Senate follows through and passes the law…it might at least wake up some advertisers!!

February 3, 2011 at 1:12 pm
(80) Bob E says:

I have been working in broadcasting for nearly 30 years. Don’t blame the broadcasters for this. Very little of the content that goes on the air is produced by the broadcasters and the broadcasters simply pass on what is provided to them. If the broadcaster tries to limit the audio levels you wont have the dramatic ranges that movies require from a whisper to an explosion etc. Most commercials are produced by production houses that are hired by the advertisers. These are the responsible parties. Broadcasters are already held to strict standard for minimum and maximum audio levels. The commercials need to be held to the same average audio levels that the programs already follow.

February 22, 2011 at 11:55 am
(81) J. King says:

And how do we ‘report’ violations of this law? There are SEVERAL on my stations that are ridiculously loud & annoying.
I think it’s a great bill, but how will it be enforced?

February 22, 2011 at 6:56 pm
(82) usgovinfo says:

J. King – Complaints should be filed with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) using the web page at:

http://esupport.fcc.gov/complaints.htm

Thanks!
Robert Longley

October 3, 2011 at 8:29 pm
(83) Nicholas J.Brunk Sr. says:

Do Not buy or use Products associated with Screaming Commericals ! They are rude ; an insulting .

May 30, 2011 at 8:24 am
(84) leslie says:

hurry up with this.

August 24, 2011 at 8:07 am
(85) orbit.ribot says:

This should be considered as Invasion of Privacy.
I’m so excited to hear about this bill.
Thanks.

December 26, 2011 at 9:45 pm
(86) Jojo says:

If they voluntarily limit the volume, it costs ABSOLUTELY ZERO!
That’s right! It is FREE!!! For them to voluntarily limit volume, they already have the technology and know the limits; they just CHOOSE TO BLAST AT THE “MAX ALLOWED VOLUME.”

It’s unethical and turns off people from the advertising.
And about that form that was recommended, it does NOT have ANY option for this category – we have to choose something like “Deceptive advertising,” and then we can proceed to filing a form – but, I agree that MASSIVE FILING OF THE FORMS WILL MAKE *FASTER* ACTION, because
LEGISLATION WILL TAKE *YEARS* to fully enforce, even though all they have to do is change a couple settings in the software and/or hardware!

January 21, 2012 at 10:19 am
(87) joe says:

Now HD offers advertisers more space to “fly” commercials across the the sides of the TV frame during regular programming. Can’t we just go back to the subliminal messages of the 60′s and 70′s…. I prefer them.

March 16, 2012 at 9:35 am
(88) seletha says:

what happen to this bill i sure wish they had got this passed but i guess the tv lobbyist mean more or pay more

April 11, 2012 at 1:01 pm
(89) J.L. Lee says:

What about non-compliance? Do we get to shoot them?

April 11, 2012 at 4:00 pm
(90) Robert Longley says:

@ J.L. Lee — as long as you use a silencer, I guess.

June 17, 2012 at 11:02 pm
(91) Pam says:

THERE ARE ENTIRELY TOOOOO!!!! MANY COMMERCIALS AIRED DURING REGULAR TELEVISION PROGRAMMING. IT ACTUALLY IS A NUSIANCE AND VERY IRRITATING. SOMEONE REALLY SHOULD STOP IT. I COUNTED 12 COMMERCIALS AIRED AT EACH INTERVAL OF GOING TO COMMERCIAL BREAK. THAT IS ABSOLUTELY RIDICULOUS!!!!! WHAT CAN BE DONE ABOUT THAT? AND WHO CAN WE GO TO TO STOP IT?

December 4, 2012 at 9:22 pm
(92) Mglynn says:

I can’t believe some genius hasn’t come up with plug in speakers that limit the output db level regardless of input. Someone can make money and we can avoid our govn’t spending more than necessary and taking forever to do it. I would buy it if it were made in America and not priced too high. Now, how can we get THEM to stop the logos and pop ups during the program? I have emailed several net works, broadcasters, and advertisers and they won’t answer back. They have conditioned us to accept their tenacity in garnering our attention as good information and a necessary evil. Why,other than greed,can’t it go back to advertisers pay for some air time and producers are paid by the cable companies and investors? Didn’t we all think when paid tv,cable,would at least limit some of the bombardment of commercials.

March 18, 2013 at 4:23 pm
(93) carolyn says:

So far (as of 3/18/13), I have not found ANY station that is following the law. I get well over 300 stations and EVERY SINGLE ONE has the volume go up tremendously at each ad. I am sick of this. When is someone going to actually enforce the law?????

January 13, 2014 at 7:52 am
(94) Vivienne Carpenter says:

It’s 1/13/14 and the commercials are still way too loud. A lot of tv shows are at a low volume so I have to turn the volume up to hear it, then when a commercial comes on I’m blasted out of the living room by the noise!

April 5, 2014 at 5:44 pm
(95) guest says:

the the gov stop the cables and other bills from going up it is hurting the people of the usa the cable bill keeps going up up up

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