While it's been talked about for ages, the Senate has now passed a bill that attempts to force TV commercials to be at a similar volume to the shows that they're paired with
. As many people have complained over the years, it often feels that the commercials are set to a much higher volume to gain attention. Of course, in reality, this tends to annoy more than anything else. The so-called CALM Act (Commercial Advertisement Loudness Mitigation -- we really need to stop cutesy naming of bills) gives the FCC the mandate to make sure commercials are at a reasonable volume. The House has passed a similar bill, and once the two are aligned, it's likely this will become law.
However, as John Abell points out at the Wired link above, this probably won't matter too much. Fewer and fewer people seem to actually watch TV commercials these days, and more TV viewing is shifting to the internet (where these rules won't apply). And, while I agree that louder commercials can be annoying
, is this really the sort of thing that needs to involve the federal government?