One thing I've found to be important with pirate radio is the need to have regular group meetings that are required. You've got to have a time when a highly diverse group of people can just hang. And a time to go over the regular operations of the studio.
KBFR is self supporting, so we use these meetings to collect dues as well. We add up all the expense from the previous month, divide by the number of DJ's, and that's the dues for the month. Seems to work well.
We also go over the expenses so everyone is clear on what we're spending money on (studio rent, cell phones, equipment repairs, internet access, utilties, etc.). Currently we run a cost of about $500-600 a month which works out to about $25 per DJ per month.
The average meeting has several components:
- Dues and budget review
- Systems update (computers, networks, STL operations)
- CD production (we do a thing called Studio Free.. a regular in studio local music show.. and we record it and we're making it into a CD for fundraising)
- Review of upcoming shows and live acts
- Review of DJ shows (types/mix/times)
- Introduction of new DJ's
- Update the DJ phone list
- Reset the key code (the door to the studio/van has a lock box and key code.. you get it by showing up for the meeting. Miss the meeting, and you have to have one damn good reason to get the code. the only way to get it is to show up for the next monthly meeting. Miss that meeting, you're no longer part of the Boulder Underground Radio Group (BURG))
- Assign jobs no one volunteers for
- Go over happenings in town and things we should be announcing
- General discussion on whatever topics the DJ's want to bring up
We take this seriously. So seriously that we suspend people for a month if they don't show up for the meeting. I know, sounds harsh, but it's really the only way to make sure everyone takes being at the meetings seriously. If you miss two meetings, you're out of the group.
If someone can't make a once a month meeting for an hour or two, you've gotta wonder if they're really interested in being involved with the station or just showing up to do a weekly show.