Taking on an issue they've heard a lot about, lawmakers today approved a bill aimed at stopping the ads from playing noticeably louder than programs.
Virginia Democratic Rep. Rick Boucher called the problem "very frustrating" and said something should be done about it.
California Democrat Anna Eshoo, herself fed up with intrusive commercials, drafted the legislation after discovering it was a common complaint raised with federal regulators. It was passed by a voice vote, with no formal roll call.
Currently, the government doesn't have much say in the volume of TV ads. It's been getting grievances about commercial loudness for decades. And fixing sound levels has its complications.
Managing the transition between programs and ads without spoiling the artistic intent of the producers poses technical challenges. It may mean that TV broadcasters will have to purchase new equipment.