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Harris Calls Up 1,000 People About Loud TV Commercials

Harris Corp. reminds that it stands ready to sell volume-mitigation gear in the wake of federal legislation aimed at quelling loud TV commercials. The broadcast equipment vendor published the results of a telephone survey of 1,000 people, asking them how they dealt with loud commercials.

Not too shockingly, 41 percent turned the volume down. Another 22 percent hit “mute,” and 17 percent changed the channel. Harris further asked how they responded to those ads that blow them out of the room. Sixty-one percent overly loud commercials left them with a negative perception of the product being advertised. Thirty-eight percent said they’d be less likely to pay attention or consider buying the product. Another 23 percent said they switch channels (as opposed to the 17 percent considering volume only, not content). Only 5 percent said louder volume is more likely to make them pay attention.

Congress just passed a bill to compel the FCC to regulate commercial audio volumes. A companion bill is pending in the Senate. Harris’s pollsters said 29 percent of the folks in its sample considered legislation unnecessary, though 33 percent favored it.

The survey was conducted between Nov. 15 and Nov. 22.