I really feel that the Rock & Roll era has brought this loudness culture. You know, the cool thing to do is crank up the music as loud as possible and throw up your index and pinky fingers in the air and play air guitar!! I'm 26 and lots of people I know think that it's being a "gay" or being a "*****" if you ask to turn it down. I'm probably the minority here who feels this way, but I feel it's the truth. I was born in India and moved to the United States when I was 10, and thus this loudness culture is not engraved into my psyche. Maybe I'm just naturally more sensitive to higher frequencies? Maybe it's a little bit of both? There is scientific research that shows that kids these days are more likely to experience hearing loss at an earlier age. I feel that this issue roots directly from Rock & Roll, and that it wasn't more apparent before because people didn't listen to music 24/7 on their iPods.