Welcome to The Flack™ for Friday, Nov. 20.

Every other Friday 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 Convergence of Ransomware and Public Relations — Imagine it’s an ordinary workday. You log onto your computer, only to be greeted by a message that reads: “YOU’VE BEEN HACKED… EMAIL THIS ADDRESS TO START THE PAYMENT PROCESS AND THE SAFE RETURN OF YOUR DATA.” Later that same day, you receive a call from a local media outlet asking about your security breach. How did they find out about this so quickly? The hackers let them know. After hacking into systems, some cybercriminals are issuing press releases announcing what they’ve done. It’s called “double extortion,” and you need to be prepared. This article explains how it can happen and what you should do if it happens to you.

Twitter Launches Disappearing ‘Fleets’ — Similar to features on Instagram and Snapchat, this week Twitter introduced ‘fleets,’ tweets that disappear 24 hours after being posted. You can learn more about the new feature in this article from Reuters. Remember to be careful what you tweet / fleet — just because it disappears after 24 hours doesn’t mean someone didn’t take a screenshot. 

Forgive Me, for I Have Sinned … Against The English LanguageSynergy, deep dive, win-win, 30,000-foot view, ping me — if you’ve worked in the corporate world you’ve likely heard so much jargon, you may not notice it anymore. Corporate jargon is rampant, but it isn’t random. Its use is often tied to where people stand in a social hierarchy. A new paper from social scientists at the University of California’s Marshall School of Business and Columbia Business School explores where jargon comes from and when/why we use it. Interesting, three-minute listen from National Public Radio.

Zoom and Text Less, Call More, New Science Suggests — 2020 has been the year of working remotely, and that has caused a significant increase in texting. While texting is efficient and can spare us the awkwardness of a voice call, it’s also making us feel more disconnected, according to new research. And Zoom isn’t the solution either. New research suggests we should all pick up the phone a lot more. Check out this sharp article from Inc.

Follow the 10-20-30 Rule for Killer Presentations — The business world is full of horrible presentations. We’ve all sat through them, and a few of us have delivered them. We often find it daunting when challenged to improve. Some don’t know where to start; while others feel they just don’t have enough time. But, fear not. The 10-20-30 Rule for Killer Presentations can lower your stress and give you a simple, straightforward method to make sure your messages are heard and retained by your audience. Keep in mind, no presentation approach will save you if your idea is bad. That said, many great ideas fall on deaf ears due to poor presentations. If you want to improve your presentation skills in the boardroom or on a Zoom meeting, start here. 

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Careful, that’s a hot mic:

NBC’s Ken Dilanian caught cursing on air when brought onto MSNBC to deliver breaking news

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flack

noun

: one who provides publicity

flack

verb

: 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.