Dan Savage on Alternative Weeklies, Savage U

Nationally syndicated sex columnist Dan Savage is known for discussing all things X-rated, but I recently had the chance to interview him for “So What Do You Do?” to discuss the future of alternative weeklies, how he branched out into other media outlets and his new MTV show, Savage U.

On if alternative weeklies will fare any better in the digital era:

DS: I don’t! The print media is in trouble everywhere and is having to transition and transition fast to the new economic models.

If his other media ventures were deliberate moves or did other outlets approach him:

DS: People began reaching out to me. I get letters every day from people asking me how to syndicate a column — because obviously I must know since I have one — and I have no idea how you syndicate a column. I started writing a column and people started contacting me, asking me if they could run it too. I never got out there really and marketed the column.

On getting students to open up about their sexual troubles on Savage U:

DS: Try not to get them to open up about their sex lives on camera. That would be the real trick. Anyone who wanted to come on the show and do a one-on-one had to nominate themselves, volunteer and be pre-interviewed by producers. We wanted to make sure we were talking to people that weren’t making stuff up to be on television.

For more on Savage, check out the entire Mediabistro interview.