COMMISSIONER JESSICA ROSENWORCEL
Implementation of the Commercial Advertisement Loudness Mitigation Act
MB Docket No. 11-93
Consumers have long complained about excessively-loud commercials on television.
This is especially true when advertisements are dramatically louder than the programming they
accompany. It’s a small thing. But for many viewers, it’s irritating in a big way.
So Congress decided to do something about it. In the Commercial Loudness Mitigation
(CALM) Act, Congress directed the Commission to incorporate by reference industry technical
standards designed to control the volume of digital programming offered on broadcast television
and through multichannel video programming distributors. The Commission implemented this
law in 2011. Our rules became effective in 2012. Today, we build on what has come before by
adopting a rulemaking designed to make sure that as technology evolves, our policies remain up-
So far, so good. But to ensure that the CALM Act really has a meaningful effect will
require more than just rulemakings. Since our rules became effective, the Commission has
received nearly 20,000 complaints involving excessively-loud commercials. By any measure,
that is a lot. Viewers are—quite literally—reaching out to us and asking us to take action. That
is why I support the request made by Representative Anna Eshoo and Senator Sheldon
Whitehouse to issue quarterly reports that identify patterns of CALM Act noncompliance. I
believe this will not only facilitate enforcement of our rules—it could help us put this irritating,
persistent problem to rest.