May 07, 2021
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Canadians of one loud voice when it comes to noisy TV commercials

OTTAWA – The CRTC has struck a chord with the public over its attempt to tone down overly loud television commercials.

And with Tuesday’s close of the window for submitting views, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission has been given a pretty clear picture where the Canadian public stands on the issue.

It also knows where the industry stands, too, and it’s not with the public when it comes to the possibility of mandatory regulation.

In the past two months, the CRTC has received 7,293 written submissions in response to its call for advice, more than 10 times the number of complaints it had fielded over TV ads the previous three years combined.

Almost to a person the message has been the same — Canadians think TV ads are too loud, they believe the ads are made purposely loud by advertisers and they want the commission to do something about it.

“The loud commercials drive me crazy, they hurt my ears and make me want to leave the room,” wrote a woman from Uxbridge, Ont..

“I am sick and tired of having to adjust the TV volume every time a commercial comes on,” said a viewer from Belleville, Ont..

One apartment dweller in Edmonton wrote he has found commercials so loud at times that he has received complaints from his neighbours.

Many pointed out that advertisers are foolishly defeating their own interests because they often mute the sound or leave the room rather than sit through loud ads.

The problem will only get worse once Canada completes its transition to digital signals in September since digital allows for a greater range in sound than analog.

An official with the CRTC said the number of submissions was considered “large” but would give no further comment because the issue was still under discussion. The commission has decided against holding public hearings and will likely render its decision later this year.

The strong, negative response from across Canada is no surprise to Mark Richer, president of the Washington-based Advanced Television Systems Committee, which has issued standard adopted by the United States and which are being considered by the CRTC.

“This is a common complaint by people … fix those loud commercials,” he said. “My wife has complained to me and I know a lot of people in the industry whose wife has complained to them.”

The U.S. has passed a law requiring broadcasters and distributors to comply with the ATSC standards by the end of this year.

In February, CRTC chairman Konrad von Finckenstein sounded like a man hoping the two-month public review process would point to a solution in Canada without intervention from politicians. But von Finckenstein also made clear he thought the problem was real.

“Viewers should not have to adjust the volume at every commercial break, and we will work with the broadcasting industry to find an acceptable solution,” he said at the time.

The question appears to be whether a fix can be achieved voluntarily or whether the CRTC must lay down the rules for broadcasters and distributors such as cable and satellite carriers, as happened in the United States.

For its part, the industry is unanimous it can modulate sound so that commercials don’t shake the house. In fact, it is already putting new technology into play, many in the industry say.

“Rogers is proactively addressing this issue by deploying an integrated hardware solution on our cable distribution network,” Pamela Dinsmore, the firm’s head of regulatory affairs, wrote the CRTC this week.

The CBC said it is has established an “internal committee to review current loudness monitoring” and is looking at acquiring the next generation of loudness meters capable of “simultaneous audio multichannel monitoring.”

It anticipates spending $2.2 million on a fix and believes it can implement the first of three needed components by the end of 2011.

“The (CBC) submits that no regulatory changes are required at this time,” said Bev Kirshenblatt, senior director of regulatory affairs.

“The commission should issue a policy that sets an expectation that all broadcasters take the necessary steps to control the loudness of commercial messages,” Kirshenblatt added.

Richer offered no advice for Canada, but said the U.S. experience shows that it is possible to save the eardrums of television viewers.

He said most U.S. broadcasters have already adopted the ATSC standard in advance of the legislation taking effect and so far the results have been encouraging.

“My take is that the recommendations work and if implemented properly they’ll resolve the issue,” he said. “Our goal is to not cause the viewer to pick up the remote control and adjust the volume as it switches from program to commercials and commercials to program.”

Source: The Canadian Press

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Headline, Industry News

Canadians of one loud voice when it comes to noisy TV commercials

OTTAWA – The CRTC has struck a chord with the public over its attempt to tone down overly loud television commercials.

And with Tuesday’s close of the window for submitting views, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission has been given a pretty clear picture where the Canadian public stands on the issue.

It also knows where the industry stands, too, and it’s not with the public when it comes to the possibility of mandatory regulation.

In the past two months, the CRTC has received 7,293 written submissions in response to its call for advice, more than 10 times the number of complaints it had fielded over TV ads the previous three years combined.

Almost to a person the message has been the same — Canadians think TV ads are too loud, they believe the ads are made purposely loud by advertisers and they want the commission to do something about it.

“The loud commercials drive me crazy, they hurt my ears and make me want to leave the room,” wrote a woman from Uxbridge, Ont..

“I am sick and tired of having to adjust the TV volume every time a commercial comes on,” said a viewer from Belleville, Ont..

One apartment dweller in Edmonton wrote he has found commercials so loud at times that he has received complaints from his neighbours.

Many pointed out that advertisers are foolishly defeating their own interests because they often mute the sound or leave the room rather than sit through loud ads.

The problem will only get worse once Canada completes its transition to digital signals in September since digital allows for a greater range in sound than analog.

An official with the CRTC said the number of submissions was considered “large” but would give no further comment because the issue was still under discussion. The commission has decided against holding public hearings and will likely render its decision later this year.

The strong, negative response from across Canada is no surprise to Mark Richer, president of the Washington-based Advanced Television Systems Committee, which has issued standard adopted by the United States and which are being considered by the CRTC.

“This is a common complaint by people … fix those loud commercials,” he said. “My wife has complained to me and I know a lot of people in the industry whose wife has complained to them.”

The U.S. has passed a law requiring broadcasters and distributors to comply with the ATSC standards by the end of this year.

In February, CRTC chairman Konrad von Finckenstein sounded like a man hoping the two-month public review process would point to a solution in Canada without intervention from politicians. But von Finckenstein also made clear he thought the problem was real.

“Viewers should not have to adjust the volume at every commercial break, and we will work with the broadcasting industry to find an acceptable solution,” he said at the time.

The question appears to be whether a fix can be achieved voluntarily or whether the CRTC must lay down the rules for broadcasters and distributors such as cable and satellite carriers, as happened in the United States.

For its part, the industry is unanimous it can modulate sound so that commercials don’t shake the house. In fact, it is already putting new technology into play, many in the industry say.

“Rogers is proactively addressing this issue by deploying an integrated hardware solution on our cable distribution network,” Pamela Dinsmore, the firm’s head of regulatory affairs, wrote the CRTC this week.

The CBC said it is has established an “internal committee to review current loudness monitoring” and is looking at acquiring the next generation of loudness meters capable of “simultaneous audio multichannel monitoring.”

It anticipates spending $2.2 million on a fix and believes it can implement the first of three needed components by the end of 2011.

“The (CBC) submits that no regulatory changes are required at this time,” said Bev Kirshenblatt, senior director of regulatory affairs.

“The commission should issue a policy that sets an expectation that all broadcasters take the necessary steps to control the loudness of commercial messages,” Kirshenblatt added.

Richer offered no advice for Canada, but said the U.S. experience shows that it is possible to save the eardrums of television viewers.

He said most U.S. broadcasters have already adopted the ATSC standard in advance of the legislation taking effect and so far the results have been encouraging.

“My take is that the recommendations work and if implemented properly they’ll resolve the issue,” he said. “Our goal is to not cause the viewer to pick up the remote control and adjust the volume as it switches from program to commercials and commercials to program.”

Source: The Canadian Press

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Headline, Industry News

Canadians of one loud voice when it comes to noisy TV commercials

OTTAWA – The CRTC has struck a chord with the public over its attempt to tone down overly loud television commercials.

And with Tuesday’s close of the window for submitting views, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission has been given a pretty clear picture where the Canadian public stands on the issue.

It also knows where the industry stands, too, and it’s not with the public when it comes to the possibility of mandatory regulation.

In the past two months, the CRTC has received 7,293 written submissions in response to its call for advice, more than 10 times the number of complaints it had fielded over TV ads the previous three years combined.

Almost to a person the message has been the same — Canadians think TV ads are too loud, they believe the ads are made purposely loud by advertisers and they want the commission to do something about it.

“The loud commercials drive me crazy, they hurt my ears and make me want to leave the room,” wrote a woman from Uxbridge, Ont..

“I am sick and tired of having to adjust the TV volume every time a commercial comes on,” said a viewer from Belleville, Ont..

One apartment dweller in Edmonton wrote he has found commercials so loud at times that he has received complaints from his neighbours.

Many pointed out that advertisers are foolishly defeating their own interests because they often mute the sound or leave the room rather than sit through loud ads.

The problem will only get worse once Canada completes its transition to digital signals in September since digital allows for a greater range in sound than analog.

An official with the CRTC said the number of submissions was considered “large” but would give no further comment because the issue was still under discussion. The commission has decided against holding public hearings and will likely render its decision later this year.

The strong, negative response from across Canada is no surprise to Mark Richer, president of the Washington-based Advanced Television Systems Committee, which has issued standard adopted by the United States and which are being considered by the CRTC.

“This is a common complaint by people … fix those loud commercials,” he said. “My wife has complained to me and I know a lot of people in the industry whose wife has complained to them.”

The U.S. has passed a law requiring broadcasters and distributors to comply with the ATSC standards by the end of this year.

In February, CRTC chairman Konrad von Finckenstein sounded like a man hoping the two-month public review process would point to a solution in Canada without intervention from politicians. But von Finckenstein also made clear he thought the problem was real.

“Viewers should not have to adjust the volume at every commercial break, and we will work with the broadcasting industry to find an acceptable solution,” he said at the time.

The question appears to be whether a fix can be achieved voluntarily or whether the CRTC must lay down the rules for broadcasters and distributors such as cable and satellite carriers, as happened in the United States.

For its part, the industry is unanimous it can modulate sound so that commercials don’t shake the house. In fact, it is already putting new technology into play, many in the industry say.

“Rogers is proactively addressing this issue by deploying an integrated hardware solution on our cable distribution network,” Pamela Dinsmore, the firm’s head of regulatory affairs, wrote the CRTC this week.

The CBC said it is has established an “internal committee to review current loudness monitoring” and is looking at acquiring the next generation of loudness meters capable of “simultaneous audio multichannel monitoring.”

It anticipates spending $2.2 million on a fix and believes it can implement the first of three needed components by the end of 2011.

“The (CBC) submits that no regulatory changes are required at this time,” said Bev Kirshenblatt, senior director of regulatory affairs.

“The commission should issue a policy that sets an expectation that all broadcasters take the necessary steps to control the loudness of commercial messages,” Kirshenblatt added.

Richer offered no advice for Canada, but said the U.S. experience shows that it is possible to save the eardrums of television viewers.

He said most U.S. broadcasters have already adopted the ATSC standard in advance of the legislation taking effect and so far the results have been encouraging.

“My take is that the recommendations work and if implemented properly they’ll resolve the issue,” he said. “Our goal is to not cause the viewer to pick up the remote control and adjust the volume as it switches from program to commercials and commercials to program.”

Source: The Canadian Press

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Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

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