Journalist Spotlight | Interview with Cameron Wilmot, Founder and Managing Director of TweakTown
This week’s Spotlight Interview is with Cameron Wilmot of TweakTown, an online news and reviews site covering the latest in tech, science, space, and gaming since 1997.
TweakTown started as your personal homepage. Can you tell me a bit about how the site became what it is today?
Firstly, thanks for taking the time to interview me. Sure, TweakTown originally started out in 1997 as “Wilmot’s Website”. It was a single-page homepage with information about me, a big thing back in the day.
Since getting my first PC (a 486), I have been fascinated by them and what made them tick. That first PC ended up dying about two weeks after getting it since I thought at my young age that switching the voltage on the power supply might make it quicker. Big mistake, of course!
The PC got fixed (thankfully). I remember buying a game called Theme Park after having had to save up for it for what felt like an eternity. I got the game home, and it didn’t work. It turns out I didn’t have enough RAM for it. After many tears and tinkering (tweaking), I found a DOS program called “memmaker”. After running it, I was delighted to find I made the game work all by myself. I was hooked!
Some years on, I started writing guides on Wilmot’s Website instructing people how to make their computers faster. One of these guides was a big hit - a guide showing people how to improve the performance of their 56k modem.
The guides continued, but also companies started sending their hardware for me to review. Before I knew it, I had almost a room full of hardware to test, with new goodies showing up almost daily. Fast forward to today, and we have a great team of editors worldwide helping with extensive testing and news coverage.
You have a background in IT rather than traditional media experience. How has this helped you develop TweakTown into a successful outlet?
I have been fascinated with the internet and computers ever since my grandfather let me use his 286 to dial into bulletin boards (before the internet!). It was a big deal to be able to use his computer! I remember going to a local “internet demonstration” by Yellow Pages. From that moment, I was totally hooked - and even from a young age realised the internet would be something big.
It’s easy to see now that my passion for the internet and computers drove TweakTown into what it is today. Without that passion, it wouldn’t exist.
What do you feel makes TweakTown different from other tech and gaming websites?
Combined, TweakTown’s editors and contributors have over 100 years of experience in the tech and gaming space, and our editors are passionate about the various topics they cover. Many of our editors have been with the site for over 10 years and have built up the ability and authority over that time.
What has been the highlight of your career so far?
Many come to mind, and maybe some that aren’t (getting old, lol), but one that comes to mind was seeing over 30,000 concurrent active readers on our website during the Covid times.
What is a commonly held belief about your job and the industry that you disagree with?
Working from home must be a dream! Don’t get me wrong, it definitely has its advantages, but there is a lot of time spent at home where I prefer to be around people at times, especially over the past few years with Covid.
Where do you see yourself in the future, and where would you like your work to take you?
Hopefully somewhat similar to now. Work is about to take me back to Taiwan for Computex Taipei 2023 next month, after a long break due to Covid, and I hope to see an increase in business trips.
Is there any upcoming work from you or TweakTown we should keep an eye out for?
Nothing in particular, but check us out if you haven’t already for the latest in tech, gaming, science, and space news and reviews!
And lastly, what are your pitching preferences?
Definitely email. Short and sweet emails. If we don’t reply the first time, sorry, but we aren’t interested.