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Did the law banning loud commercials ever go into effect?

Have you watched TV lately and when it goes to commercial, you are blasted with volume?

ST. LOUIS — You know the feeling: you are watching your favorite show or sport and the commercials in the program are at a higher volume than your show. Suddenly, information about a product or a candidate is shouting at you.

You reach for the remote and turn the volume down, only to turn it back up for your program.

Someone has surely fixed this annoyance by now, right?


Did a law banning loud commercials ever go into effect?

5 On Your Side viewer, Cindy McReynolds, emailed the Verify team asking, “I remember hearing about a law banning loud commercials, but I still hear them blaring.  Did that law ever go into effect?”


  • The Commercial Advertisement Loudness Mitigation Act or CALM Act
  • The Federal Communications Commission
  • Senator Tammy Duckworth’s spokesperson
  • Senator Sheldon Whitehouse spokesperson



There is a law banning loud commercials on broadcast, cable and satellite television but the law does not include streaming services.


In 2010, Congress passed the CALM Act which bans the audio of commercials from being broadcast at louder volumes than the program material. However, the law only applies to broadcast, cable and satellite television. It does not apply to streaming services.

There are efforts by legislators to change the law.  Last year, Illinois Senator Tammy Duckworth was a co-sponsor of the CALM Modernization Act along with Rhode Island Senator, Sheldon Whitehouse. 

The proposed law would update the current CALM Act and prohibit streaming services from airing loud commercials. The bill died in the last congress. But Senator Whitehouse’s spokesperson told the Verify team he plans to reintroduce the CALM Modernization Act during this Congress.

In the meantime, try adjusting the audio settings on your TV.

Some TV models have an option to keep the volume consistent across programs and commercials.

We can verify yes, there is a law banning loud commercials, but it does not include streaming services.

If you would like to report a violation of the CALM Act to the FCC, you can do so online, by fax or by phone. 

The Commission’s online complaint form is on its website here.

Complaints may also be filed by faxed or mailed to the FCC. If you need help filing a complaint, call 1-888-CALL-FCC (1-888-225-5322) or 1-888-TELL-FCC (1-888-835-5322) (TTY). 

There is no fee for filing a consumer complaint.

Let 5 On Your Side know what we can Verify for you. Please email us at verify@ksdk.com.

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