Ad Blasts Now Thing of the Past: Ever been irritated when you're watching your favorite show and then an ad comes on and it's MUCH LOUDER THAN THE SHOW YOU WERE WATCHING?
Well, no more. Starting today, the Federal Communications Commission is barring broadcasters and pay TV providers from airing loud commercials. According to the new regulation, commercials must now be broadcast at the "same average volume" as the programs they accompany.
The regulation is a long time coming. The FCC started receiving floods of complaints about the phenomenon to its consumer call center in 2002. Congress took up the cause and established the Commercial Advertisement Loudness Mitigation, or CALM, Act in 2010. The FCC deadline for compliance is today: Dec. 3, 2012.
Unlike other matters (such as all things related to the fiscal cliff), the CALM Act enjoyed broad bipartisan support. It passed the Senate by unaminous vote and got a quick pass in the House through a voice vote. (If only all legislation were so easy.)
Now it's up to you to ensure that broadcast companies comply. The FCC will not be monitoring the issue, but will be open to viewer complaints, which can be filed by using the FCC's online complaint form, 2000G, at http://www.fcc.gov/complaints.