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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — If you’ve ever been annoyed by a blaring TV commercial, you have a reason to calm down. A law goes into effect today to balance the volume on those loud ads.

“The CALM Act is set to keep the commercial levels from being very loud when you come from a program to a commercial,” WWAY Chief Engineer Billy Stratton said.

Congress passed the Commercial Advertisement Loudness Mitigation (CALM) Act last year. Most viewers say it’s about time.

“You fall asleep, and all of a sudden the commercial wakes you up, and you don’t know where you are,” Jeanne Chase said.

“I find it irritating when I’m listening to commercials to have the volume come up and have to turn it down,” Bob Haywood said.

Stratton says this is something viewers have wanted for a long time, but the technology was not there until now.

“With the digital world, it’s more easily done,” Stratton said. “It’s measuring an average of loudness over a period of time.”

And as for the advertisers who will have to find another way to get your attention? Most viewers say being blasted never sold them anything.

“We’re going to buy their products anyway,” Chase said. They don’t have to blast it in our faces.”

“I think they’ve been out-screaming each other,” Kenneth Eaton said. “They’re playing on a level field here.”

The CALM Act applies to all commercials on all channels whether they’re on cable, satellite, or over-the air.

Comment on this Story

  • Guest350

    I somehow believe the technology has been around for years. It just was not used for obvious reasons. This is great, as there are at least 3 advertisers in the area that really overdo the audio on their commercials. In fact they are so annoying, I usually change channels or shut the set off entirely. I would not consider doing business with any company that condones loud commercials.

  • Donald

    your station is the only one that i have to increase on regular programs and commercials are still louder than your news broadcast station
    i can leave the volume on 22 on all the other channels except your station
    can you explain why.

  • Kerry

    The commercial for Stevenson Honda is just as loud as before– I can hear no change– The other commercials sound fine now—

  • Guest22

    Just like the Do Not Call List – Another Government Joke

  • Guest2013

    I’ll have to agree on the Do Not Call folks!
    While at first I praised the Do Not Call folks, I have been bombarded with spam calls over and over, and I do file the complaint online. The last complaint I filed, as with each time, I filled in my home address as usual, then asked them once again to send me information to my home on what has been done to the spammers on my behalf, as well as others that have filed complaints. No response yet, and it’s the 2nd time I have asked for this information over a 3 month period.
    It states on the complaint form that they need your home address in case they need to contact you. Well, I’ve given them the chance twice.

  • Justin America

    Tv. The one thing that’s really awesome just got better! Way to go Tv!

  • Guest45755

    The inverse should also apply. There’s a local (sort of) car dealer who’s radio commercials consistently play the “fine print” at a volume much lower than the subsequent commercial. Generally, they play “noise” – fireworks, Christmas bells, turkeys gobbling, etc – over the disclaimers that are already at a reduced volume for the sole purpose of hiding what they are saying.
    Technically, they provided the hidden info, but they are intentionally misleading potential customers.

  • Guest Reply

    Email generally has a “Spam Folder” that unwanted advertisements go into…and you never see them. TV needs to present the same technology for when the signal of your TV changes into “Commercial Mode”…the screen goes Blank. But then again…when you are viewing sports events coverage…the screen will go blank every 2 minutes for 5 to 7 minutes!
    Of course…you can always press the “Mute” button. Works every time in our house :-)
    PS: Just how many car commercials can there be?!!!!

  • guesty

    The politicians made sure to exempt themselves from the do not call rules. How shocking and unexpected.


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