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Why ARE commercials so loud?
Lil Ant
Someone on Twitter today wrote about how loud commercials are. My first thought was about Unk saying recently that reportedly, overloud commercials will be legislated soon in the U.S. (oh, and YAY!) My second thought was about my grandaddy.

Remember back in the days before remote controls? Remember having to get out of your chair to change channels using the rotary channel tuner? The dial wasn't the only thing "antique" about those TVs. Remember they also had to warm up? Remember that the commercials were louder than the regular programming back then, too.

Well, my grandaddy didn't like the increased volume on ads any more than we do. And he was able to do something about it, even though remote controls were unheard of back then. He wired up an on/off switch, attached it by some sort of electrical cord to the TV, and just plain turned the thing off during commercials! The brilliance was that not only did he have the amount of time commercials would take perfectly timed, but he even timed it perfectly for the TV to warm back up after being turned off. My grandaddy was brilliant :)

He's the same grandaddy in this entry.

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Go, grandaddy! As JuniorTroll revealed on Facebookorwasittwitter, he has inherited the SeniorTroll trait of muting the ads during the commercial breaks. The remote is our best friend!

This is an ongoing discussion topic in the UK too (see link below, which mentions the US legislation). In this article, it's interesting that the TV company response is often flat denial. Nonsense, of course, but I guess their lawyers have warned that any admission risks walking into a class action suit.

I think they make the ads so loud mainly to compete with the living room chatter that naturally rises when the ad breaks start, also to keep within earshot the people who step out to make a cup of coffee or visit the can. Or maybe they just think if it's louder there's more chance their stupid product will stick in your mind.


The funniest part of that article to me (aside from the "made in the 80s -- full of long pauses part) was Since television began, viewers have often complained about advertisements being louder than the programmes.

That's really cool!

There's one channel in particular that's really bad about this, especially when they show movies. I think it's TBS.

oh! I think you're right! It's the worst if you run into the kitchen and aren't near the remote and it goes to commercial. GRR!

I was watching a movie on that channel (the loud one -- whether it was TBS or not) recently, and happened to notice the volume numbers on the stereo while I was watching it. For normal viewing, that channel was on about 42, I think. For the commercials to not be intrusive? I had to turn them down to NINETEEN!

Your grandaddy WAS brilliant! :)

And I'd forgotten that those old TVs had to warm up. heh

Isn't it funny the things we forget? (and lived with like they were normal...)

On one of our more modern TVs we have touch button controls. That meant Dad count reach over with the long poker and chage the channels. All 6 of them!

It was also the TV they could lock until after 6pm.

oh funny! Now that mention it, I feel like we had (or maybe my grandparents did) that kind later, too! Too funny. 6 whole channels. What an extravagance!

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