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The Flack

The Flack™ for Friday, September 8, 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.


Spotify’s $1 Billion Podcast Bet Turns Into a Serial Drama – Not too long ago, Spotify was a subscription-based digital music service. But, over the past few years, the platform has evolved into a digital content service, offering videos, audio books and oh, so many podcasts. They reportedly paid in excess of $100 million for The Joe Rogan Experience, but the company also has paid exorbitant sums for podcasts from the Obamas, Kim Kardashian, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle and others. To this point, the investment is not paying off. The Wall Street Journal takes a deep dive into Spotify’s strategy and what it might mean for the future of media.

How a White Folding Chair Became a Symbol of Resistance – On Aug. 5 a group of white boaters attacked a Black riverboat captain who instructed them to dock their boat elsewhere, as the space was reserved for a larger vessel. Video of the brawl quickly exploded on social media, and now a white folding chair, used as a weapon during the fight, has become a symbol of resistance. White folding chair t-shirts, earrings and even tattoos are showing up everywhere. The New York Times looks at how this phenomenon transpired.

How One Reporter Covers the US Open for Newspapers all Over the Country – If you’re a tennis fan, you know the US Open will culminate this weekend in Queens, New York. And if you’ve read a story about the tournament, chances are it was written by freelance reporter Michael J. Lewis. This former newspaper reporter and English teacher has taken freelance sports journalism to a new level. He files dozens of stories, getting access to players, coaches, analysts, etc., and his stories run in newspapers and other outlets across the country. Poynter takes a look at Lewis and how he is reinventing freelance journalism.

Gannett to Pause AI Experiment After Botched High School Sports Articles – With the emergence of artificial intelligence (AI) over the past year, some news organizations thought they could reduce their costs by using AI to write stories. Who needs reporters when we have AI? Not so fast! CNN takes a look at what happened to Gannett, and it should be a lesson for other news organizations.

The Post-Labor Day Return-to-Office Push Is Here. What Leaders Need to Know – Labor Day Weekend has suddenly come and gone, and that means back to school, and now back to work for many employees who’ve been working from home since the pandemic struck. Inc. takes a look at what leaders need to know as they embark on bringing workers back to the office.


Feed Your Head:
Where Do Fonts Come From? This One Company, Mostly

These 6 Counterintuitive Tips Could Turbocharge Your Productivity

Recommend Fall Reading:
The Canceling of the American Mind




: 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.