It's been awhile. Issue wasn't covid. I was being held in my Skippy place. I was able to escape but there's still some peanut butter stuck to the roof of my mouth.
Seriously! I can back into how that campaign got its start. Client says something like, "Peanut butter. It's comfort food. Find a way to 'suggest' that to the masses." Agency goes to work. Six campaigns get shot down. "Skippy. It's couch food." "Skippy: Better 'n guy/women." "Sleep with Skippy." "It's Grandma's rocker. It's Skippy." "You're never alone with Skippy." "Gimme a Skug." (Skippy Hug)
Wait! A Skippy place. It was just a Fido Dido doodle on a napkin that one of the creative team held up during a Zoom meeting. "That's it! Board it."
See a couple of paragraphs above...Seriously!? I guess I'm an old cynic. Maybe you can make Skippy a comfort food. In fact, for me, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches count. So does beef stew - or apple pie. But I don't want to go to my apple pie place. Too big a leap. Just sayin'.
Phew. Past that. Now to the lede I buried. The CALM Act. Commercial Advertisement Loudness Mitigation Act. In force since December 13, 2012. Passed by congress (translation: politicians). That should tell you all you need to know. My comments back then still stand (here).
The new inquiry is again at the hands of congress. In essence, the question asked is, "Why isn't it working?" That's 9 years later. Thousands of dollars of equipment installed in every station in order to be compliant with rules. And GM's, programming execs and engineers could thump their collective chest. They did, while the loudness issue continued.
Hey congress: (Yes, I know. Third time I've used the word and it should be upper case. No. They don't deserve it.) You're trying to legislate against the laws of physics. You're trying to create a one-size-fits-all solution.
Full disclosure: I dislike overly loud commercials as much as the next person. But I also understand the issues - dialog vs music, peak versus average, audio spectrum used in the commercials and the programming that bookends them. AI may eventually get it done but, for now, the existing mandated gear can't. It's a stupid law that has no way of being enforced. Oh, sure, you can catch the stations that don't have their gear in place and fine them. But for those who do have the gear, proving they're in violation is nearly impossible. It's subjective and it's fleeting. Record it as evidence? Where? How? What equipment? What characteristics have changed? Yeah, I can go on with that list for a long time. So congress: stop passing stupid laws. If that bothers you, go to your Skippy place.