Obama signs bill to mute TV commercials

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Associated Press

Posted on December 16, 2010 at 12:01 AM

Updated Thursday, Dec 16 at 12:06 AM

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama has signed legislation to prevent advertisers from abruptly raising the volume of TV commercials louder than regular programming.

The law signed by Obama on Wednesday requires the Federal Communications Commission to adopt industry standards coordinating ad decibel levels to those of the regular program within one year.

The new regulations go into effect a year after that. They apply to all broadcast providers, including cable and satellite.

Lawmakers who sponsored the bill said they were reacting to their constituents' complaints about abrasively loud television commercials — and their own experiences.

The FCC has been receiving complaints since the 1960s about jarring sound bursts when commercials come on, but had not regulated program or commercial volume.

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