Congress has more important things on its agenda — trillion-dollar deficits, unemployment at a 25-year high, a broken health-care system and a couple of wars — but it would be nice not to have our eardrums destroyed every time a commercial comes on the television.
Lawmakers are considering a bill to turn down the volume on TV ads, which can be as loud as the most decibel-enriched moment — car crash, explosion, scream or whatever — in the TV show in which they appear. If Rep. Anna Eshoo, D-Calif., has her way, and we hope she does, ads in the future would be limited to the show’s average volume.
Broadcasters and advertisers, naturally, want to set their own standard. They say they’ve heard customer complaints and as an official with the Association of National Advertisers said, "Our members don’t want to offend viewers."
Maybe not, but viewers have been complaining about being blasted off the couch by blaring ads almost since the first TV was sold, and broadcasters have consistently chosen to offend their audience rather than force advertisers to take a more muted approach.
It shouldn’t take long for Congress to give the Federal Communications Commission guidelines on shushing TV advertising. Then Congress can get back to important stuff, like crazy North Koreans with nuclear ambitions.