BY BOB HOLT
You can only use the “mute” button on your television so many times due to the increasing amount of commercials, so the Federal Communications Commission has decided to help.
In 2011, the FCC said they had gotten nearly 6,000 complaints about the volume of television commercials since 2008, so they are making things a bit calmer. The Commercial Advertisement Loudness Mitigation, or CALM Act, went into effect on December 13.
According to the FCC, the new law, directed by Congress, requires a TV commercial’s average volume to be no louder than the programming on which it advertises. Some advertisements may still sound too loud, because the commercial is permitted to be louder for a few seconds, but it has to average the same overall volume as the program.
CALM says commercial volume has to be within two decibels of the program that contains them. Joe Addalia, director of technology for Hearst Television, told TODAY that stations want to encourage TV viewers to leave the remote alone, “because right next to the volume button is the channel button."
Joel Kelsey of media advocacy group Free Press said consumers had been concerned about the loud volume of commercials for a long time. “They don't like being screamed at every time the program breaks to buy deodorant," he said.
CNYcentral.com reported that the FCC adopted the rules in 2011, but allowed television networks a one-year grace period to implement them. Stations can apply for a waiver if they need more time to incorporate the new regulations.
Any suspected violators of CALM can be reported to the FCC website .