It's been a good couple of years for alt-weekly newspaper editor and sex columnist Dan Savage, at least on a couple of professional matters. And both of these successes take the form of viral campaigns that he was instrumental in founding. First is his campaign to permanently besmirch the name of Rick Santorum, a politician from Pennsylvania who is, as of this writing, still running for the Republican presidential nomination. Back in 2003, after Santorum compared homosexuality to "man-on-dog" sex, the outraged Savage led a campaign to create a neologism of "santorum," to have it become the nominative of a disgusting sexual image. To this day, you can find out the meaning of santorum by simply Googling "santorum."
While that was a wonderful, Abbie Hoffman-esque prank, a recent achievement is more earnest: the "It Gets Better" campaign began in September 2010 when Savage and his partner made a video aimed at gay teenagers suffering from social isolation and torment. The movement took off, and 14 months later, it has inspired more than 30,000 user-generated videos that have been viewed 40 million times.
However, it's "Savage Love," his long-running, super-raunchy love-and-sex advice column, that is the theme of his 6:30 p.m. appearance at Memorial Hall. Students get in free; everyone else pays $5. —David Fellerath