Congress cuts through the noise

Do-nothing Congress? We’ll just see about that.

The Senate has passed a bill turning down the volume of TV commercials.

The Commercial Advertisement Loudness Mitigation Act — get it? — requires broadcasters to turn the volume of commercials down.

But, wait, there’s more! It also permits the FCC to grant a waiver for one year if a broadcast station, cable operator, or other multichannel video programming distributor could demonstrate a financial hardship. Because we all know the financial hardship of turning the volume down.

“I think there is a certain contract when one decides to watch broadcast television that you’re going to be sold stuff in annoying ways,” Robert Thompson, director of the Bleier Center for Television and Popular Culture at Syracuse University, told the Los Angeles Times when the bill passed the House almost a year ago.