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The Flack

The Flack™ for Friday, July 15, 2022

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.


Cowboys’ Partnership With Pro-Gun Black Rifle Coffee Draws Criticisim Amidst Gun Violence There’s tone deaf, and then there’s Dallas Cowboys tone deaf. Last week, “America’s Team” announced a partnership with Black Rifle Coffee (BRC), a company run by United States veterans that “serves coffee and culture to people who love America,” according to its mission statement. Unfortunately, some of BRC’s brands include “Silencer Smooth,” “Murdered Out,” and “AK-47 Espresso Roast.” The announcement was made just two days after seven people were shot and killed at a Fourth of July parade in Highland Park, Illinois. The Sporting News looks at the announcement, its terrible timing and the subsequent backlash.

LIV Golf Shines a Spotlight on “Sportswashing” – the Nascent Term for an Age-Old Strategy – Whether it’s the World Cup in Russia, Winter Olympics in Beijing or Formula 1 hosting four races in the Middle East, sportswashing may be a relatively new term, but the simple concept has been around for ages. Leaders try to improve their nation’s reputation by hosting prestigious sporting events or sponsoring popular teams. LIV Golf, the golf tour funded by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund, is the latest example. USA Today takes a look at the history of sportswashing.

Hard Seltzer Has Gone Flat – Beverage trends come and go. Dry beer, wine coolers, Smirnoff Ice, ciders and so many other trends have upended the alcohol-beverage category only then to seemingly disappear overnight. But hard seltzer appeared to be different. There were great brands, big investments by huge companies and so many flavors. For many alcohol-beverage companies hard seltzer was more than a trend – it was the future! Until it wasn’t. The Atlantic digs into the fall of one of the biggest beverage trends in decades. Crack open a Zima and give this one a read. 

The Uber Whistleblower: I’m Exposing a System That Sold People a Lie – It’s hard to remember the world before Uber, Lyft and other ride-hailing companies. Many of us take it for granted that, with a few taps on an app, a car will arrive and take us exactly where we want to go. You can even choose the size and style of car. But this revolution has been more than the result of innovative technology. Governments had to approve, and they seemed to do so quickly and easily. But now, one of Uber’s top lobbyists has come forward to reveal the lies Uber told government officials in Europe, the Middle East and Africa. The Guardian takes a deep dive into what happened.

Can a Corporation Own Color? – You might be surprised. There are approximately 1,867 solid Pantone colors, and some companies are pushing the bounds of intellectual property by laying claim to individual colors. But what company or brand could be powerful enough to successfully trademark its color? The Hustle reviews the history of such claims, and the company that started it all might surprise you.



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: 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.