Finally, the power to turn TV commercials DOWN!

noisy-commercialsIt’s not just your remote that can control your TV volume. Thanks to a new law, TV commercials can’t be any louder than the programming around them. Better yet, the power is in your hands–and ears–to help stop annoyingly loud commercials that violate the law!

The Commercial Advertising Loudness Mitigation Act (the CALM act, get it?) passed Congress in 2010 after a flood of complaints from consumers frustrated by eardrum-blasting TV ads. Consumers Union testified in support of the act, noting that loud TV ads have been a top consumer complaint for some 45 years.

The law says a commercial may have louder and quieter moments, but overall it can’t be louder than the surrounding programming.

Since there is ton of commercials on each day, the Federal Communications Commission can use your help finding violators. If you’ve noticed a particularly loud commercial, take note of some details, and then report it to the FCC. Some things you’ll need to note:

  • The name of the advertiser or product promoted
  • The time and date you saw it
  • The name of the TV program during which you saw the commercial
  • Which TV station or pay TV provider it was on

The easiest way to file your complaint is online, and you can do that here. Or, if you’d rather do it by phone, fax or snail mail, you can find details here.

Now, go (hopefully) watch some calm, quiet TV.