Know Your Local Media: The Houston Chronicle's Dwight Silverman, from Rock Critic to Nerd King

Categories: The Media

Photo by Jay Lee
A number of years ago, one of the then music writers at the Houston Chronicle recruited me to write a music blog for I had done some writing for the defunct Houstonist Web site and personal stuff, but nothing like that. I happily accepted and began writing a music business blog called Broken Record. Dwight Silverman was the man who oversaw all the blogs on the site, and I quickly found out that he was not only a good person but the go-to guy when it came to all things nerdy.

As a tech writer and blogger for the Chron, and now as its editorial social media manager, Silverman has certainly left his mark upon the daily with both his insightful writing and his techie know-how. He's also co-hosted Technology Bytes, one of the longer-running tech radio shows (on KPFT), and is a known tech expert. Surprisingly, he got his start as a music critic -- and he knows his stuff.

Obviously, I wanted to know more, so he sat down and answered some questions.

1. You've recently switched jobs at the Chronicle. Tell me about that.

It's not so much a switch in jobs as a change of focus. I'm now the social media manager for editorial, and that's part of a greater emphasis on social media throughout the organization. We also just hired a social media director on the business side, Allison Sutton, to coordinate efforts.

But I've been working with the newsroom on social media initiatives for more than five years, and if you consider blogs to be social media (and I do), then for a lot longer than that. Because we are ramping this up, I've discontinued my print column to make time. I'm still writing my technology blog, and after all, the Web is where the action is when it comes to tech.

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I *AM* "one of these guys driving around in a Toyota pickup with a magnetic sign on the door advertising PC repair services" and, after a long and checkered IT career, quite successful at it finally.  Yes, Dwight, I *AM* "happy as a clam."  (The magnetic signs have been mostly replaced by custom vinyl lettering, it's a RAV4, not a pickup, and the signs are the smallest part of my marketing program, but it was eerie to be described so closely in a speculation.)I've met Dwight on several occasions, and he's a warm and personable guy, but imagine how shocked and flattered I was to find myself HIS role model.  You want to be like ME when you retire? I'm honored. Thanks, Dwight! I've always admired you too.

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