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The Flack

The Flack™ for Friday, July 14, 2023

The Flack highlights changes and trends in the news, examples of communications practices, and content we at BYRNE PR thought you might find useful.

We hope you enjoy, and we always welcome your feedback.


The New York Times to Disband Its Sports Department – In what may be a sign of things to come, The New York Times announced last week it will disband its sports department and will source its sports coverage from The Athletic, a subscription-based sports website the paper purchased in 2022. The New York Times talks about the strategy behind this “evolution” in how they cover sports and what this may mean for the future of sports journalism.

Is Your Company’s DEI Program Lawful? – On June 29, The U.S. Supreme Court struck down affirmative action programs at the University of North Carolina and Harvard, ending the systematic consideration of race in the admissions process. And, as Justice Neil Gorsuch pointed out, the same antidiscrimination principles apply to private businesses with more than 15 employees. The Wall Street Journal explains the effect this may have on corporate DEI programs.

Threads Continues Its Rapid RiseIn just over a week, Threads, the new Twitter alternative launched by Meta, has gained more than 100 million followers, and it appears it’s just getting started. CNET explains the rapid rise and tells you everything you need to know about the app.

Can a Thumbs-up Emoji Seal a Contract? A Canadian Judge Rules — We may not like to admit it, but we all use emojis. Smiley face, heart, checkmark … it’s easy, fun and we usually don’t give it much thought. But maybe we should. USA Today explains the ruling of a Canadian judge and what such a precedent may mean.

Skyhorse Publishing, the House of the Canceled – In a society of growing political correctness, where does an author with alternative views go to get published? The answer is Skyhorse Publishing. The company has an impressive list of right- and left-leaning authors, and the demand for such work seems to be increasing rapidly. The Wall Street Journal digs into the business, its founder and the authors who call Skyhorse home.


Beach Reads:

Your Smartphone Can Have Two Lines. Here’s Why You’d Want That. 

What Is the Threads Logo Supposed to Look Like?

The YouTube Effect




: one who provides publicity



: to act as a press agent or promoter for something

The word flack was first used as a noun meaning “publicity agent” during the late 1930s. According to one rumor, the word was coined in tribute to a well-known movie publicist of the time, Gene Flack.