Oh, TV fans so dear,
Do you hear the news that's going 'round?
'Tis by law, that louder than the program,
The commercial will not sound.
Apologies to the Irish for the above parody. Effective January 1, 2014, the Federal Communications Commission has ruled that commercials cannot be louder than the program. This rule came about due to voluminous public complaints.
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My humble opinion is that public media should have a strong incentive to live by law and regulation, especially where it represents public wishes. Or just common sense should dictate to TV and their advertisers that this behavior is the reason for the mute button on the remote. A relative few commercials seem to have learned this, and rely on clever, rather than loud.
Incidentally, due to general ignoring of this ruling by networks and stations, in 2015 the FCC requested that the public report any apparent abuse by stations.