There are some rules that a
DJ has to follow in putting
a show together.  They're
not very restrictive at KZSU
compared to most stations,
but still they're there:

External restrictions:                 Internal Restrictions:

The FCC requires a legal ID            You need to do a promotional
("KZSU, Stanford") once an             announcement for some other
hour, and some Public                  show at KZSU once an hour.
Service Announcements (twice
an hour at KZSU).                      Music DJs are required to
                                       play a certain number of
There are other FCC                    cuts out of the "A-file"
requirements such as, no               roughly 10 per show.
long passages of dead air.
                                          Many people are often
And there are the infamous                surprised to hear this,
restrictions on the                       but then they're also
"indecent" and the                        often surprised to hear
"obscene".  "Indecent"                    that for commercial stations
expressions are allowed late              the restrictions are much
at night, but "obscene"                   tighter.
material is in *never*
allowed.                                  Who controls what gets put
                                          in the A-file?  The final
   How these ridiculous polices           authority is the judgement
   are in any way consistent              of the directors of the
   with the First Ammendment is           music department, though
   beyond me.  The intellectual           they rely a lot on the
   gyrations involved have to             judgement of first string
   do with the supposed                   music reviewers, and have a
   physically limited character           tradition of responding to
   of the broadcast spectrum,             the opinions of DJs that
   which therefore justifies              care enough about a
   the governent's intervention           difference of opinion to
   to make sure that what is              argue the case.
   there is used well.
                                          The A-file is huge, most of
   A seriously evil philosophy.           what it contains genuinely
   We're lucky it hasn't been             does seem to be quite
   applied more rigorously.               excellent, and it's rare
                                          that this restriction ever
                                          chafes.  In effect, complying
                                          with it is just making a
                                          commitment to keep up with
                                          good, new music.