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Consumer

Palo Alto Congresswoman’s Law Turns Down Volume On TV Commercials

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People mingle in front of a display of LG Electronics televisions at a trade show. (Fredrick J. Brown/AFP/Getty Images)

People mingle in front of a display of LG Electronics televisions at a trade show. (Fredrick J. Brown/AFP/Getty Images)

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WASHINGTON (CBS SF) – TV viewing could soon sound a little calmer. The CALM Act, which limits the volume of TV commercials, goes into effect on Thursday.

The law, authored by Congresswoman Anna Eshoo, D-Palo Alto, that turns down the volume on TV commercials goes into effect Thursday.

The CALM Act, or Commercial Advertisement Loudness Mitigation Act, requires TV providers to keep the volume of commercials at the same level as regular programming.

The congresswoman, working with Rhode Island Democrat Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, pushed for the legislation after she discovered decades of consumer complaints to the Federal Communications Commission about “earsplitting television ads,” according to the congresswoman.

KCBS’ Melissa Culross Reports:

At a news conference held Thursday morning in Washington, D.C., Eshoo lauded Thursday’s implementation of the law helping all Americans no matter their political affiliation.

“This is obviously a relief to consumers,” she said.

Quieter TV viewing has arrived nearly two years after President Barack Obama signed Eshoo’s legislation into law on Dec. 15, 2010.

At Thursday’s news conference, Eshoo recalled how her bill came into existence.

At a family gathering four years ago, a commercial that she called a “blast” came on while her family watched a sporting event. After muting the ad, her brother-in-law told her to do something in Congress about the loud disturbance on the television, Eshoo said.

The FCC approved its final rules of the law last year and widespread implementation begins Thursday, the end of a grace period to accommodate any financial hardship on TV providers to comply with the law, according to Eshoo’s spokesman Charles Stewart.

The FCC will be charged with regulating commercial volumes.

According to the FCC, they will rely on consumers to monitor industry compliance with the new law.

Complaints for any violators can be filed at www.fcc.gov/complaints.

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco and Bay City News Service. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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