[opendtv] Re: Commercial Advertisement Loudness Mitigation Act

  • From: Cliff Benham <flyback1@xxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Thu, 13 Dec 2012 22:45:50 -0500

The only commentary I have found is almost 2 years old by Randy Hoffner.
http://www.tvtechnology.com/technology-corner/0118/the-new-commercial-loudness-law/198277
There is a short FCC page but it does not give any in depth explanation of the Act:
http://www.fcc.gov/encyclopedia/loud-commercials
Another page on compliance but again nothing technical:
http://www.broadcastlawblog.com/2012/12/articles/advertising-issues/compliance-deadline-for-calm-act-december-13-fcc-allows-waiver-filings-until-that-deadline/

An interesting note is that in this Act, there will be no 'spot checks' of stations or cable sources. The only way the FCC will cite a station is if a complaint is lodged by a consumer.
Certainly appears to be a lot of false teeth in CALM.

Cliff


On 12/13/2012 8:37 PM, Richard C. Ramsden wrote:
VU meters are so last century.

The US spec is A.85
the European spec is R.128
The measurement is Integrated Loudness. It's based on something like the
average level of the physical power of the sound over the length of the
program. I've got a version of the algorithm, but not with me at the
moment.

Italy was the first country to have a legal mandate. The US has been in
effect for almost a year. Fines for non-compliance go into effect very
soon.

On 12/13/2012 3:00 PM, Cliff Benham wrote:
re: Commercial Advertisement Loudness Mitigation Act

I seem to recall that in the late 60's or early 70's the FCC passed a
rule dropping commercial sound levels by 3db under program level. In
fact, CBS introduced the Volume-AXE as a possible solution.

Now, another FCC rule has appeared that is supposed to limit
commercial sound
levels.

???

I don't know what this new FCC rule actually controls.

Is it the actual volume level indicated on a "Standard" VU Meter?

Or is it the 'psychological' volume level heard and sensed by humans?

There is quite a difference.

A commercial can show normal levels on a VU meter but sound like it's
booming out
much louder than the program material on either side of it.

This is because of the sophisticated "compressors and level
controllers" used by
the commercial production companies when they make new commercials.

I believe the 1970s rule was based on what the VU meter indicated, but
as above, that doesn't
necessarily mean the commercials sounded like they were lower in
volume than the program material.


Does anyone know exactly what this new rule does and how the FCC can
control how 'loud' a non-broadcast
production company's product sound levels are?

Cliff




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