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Not a Regular Cease-and-Desist, A Cool Cease-and-Desist

From The Atlantic: Phrases that are not often used to describe a cease-and-desist letter: “the best,”“hilarious,” “cool,” “perfect,” “super classy.” And yet that is exactly the praise that Netflix’s lawyers received this week, from a variety of media outlets, for going about that most lawyerly of tasks: telling people they aren’t allowed to do a thing. In this case, […]


Facts Don’t Change People’s Minds. Here’s What Does.

From Ozan Varol: If you had asked me this question–How do you change a mind?–two years ago, I would have given you a different answer. As a former scientist, I would have cautioned you to rely on objective facts and statistics. Develop a strong case for your side, back it up with hard, cold, irrefutable […]


Equifax Apologizes

We have never read such a complete and abject apology by a corporation. Not only does the interim CEO of Equifax apologize profusely, he clearly states what they have done and will do to address the problem, and he sets clear deadlines. It’s textbook crisis management. He also announces new products that may put the […]


Corporate Attorneys & The Court of Public Opinion

[By Thom Fladung, Hennes Communications] “The house could be burned down before you even smell smoke.”   In 2009, The Georgetown Journal of Legal Ethics set out to study how the court of public opinion can shape legal controversies. The sources were the people on the front lines – responses gathered from a questionnaire sent […]


Poynter KSU Media Ethics Workshop – Fake or Fact?

ABOUT THE WORKSHOP Fake or Fact? The Poynter KSU Media Ethics Workshop is a one-day training program for professionals, educators and students that examines critical issues and perspectives in media ethics. Moderated by distinguished faculty from The Poynter Institute in St. Petersburg, Fla., the Media Ethics Workshop provides a unique forum for professionals and students […]


President Trump, the Russian Connection & Crisis Communications

By Bruce Hennes, Hennes Communications Some believe  President Trump and his closest advisers committed illegal acts by conspiring with Russian officials on a wide variety of political and financial activities. Some believe President Trump and his closest advisers indeed had contacts with Russian officials, but that those contacts were benign or perhaps even stupid, but […]


Saying You’re Sorry

From Rick Seltzer, writing in Inside Higher Ed: For college and university presidents, the process of apologizing after high-profile missteps can seem to take as long as a tortoise walking a mile. As a result, the actions Wednesday of University of California, Irvine, Chancellor Howard Gillman stand out as noteworthy. Days after news broke that […]


Lessons From Google’s Search To Protect Its Reputation

By Thom Fladung/Hennes Communications Any business leader who’s been caught in a hailstorm of criticism after an internal matter went viral must have had a surge of schadenfreude watching the Google diversity memo controversy. Google leadership was immersed in a crisis over an internal memo in large part because, well, people could Google it. Beyond […]


The Scout Lesson: If Trump Comes to Speak, Be Prepared (for Anything)

[By Bruce Hennes, Hennes Communications] Since the 1920’s, the president of the United States has had a standing invitation to attend and address the Boy Scout Jamboree, held every four years.  And most presidents have accepted that invitation, using the occasion to deliver similar messages about God, apple pie and reflect on the Scout’s Code […]


Cats Sleeping With Dogs: How Lawyers and Crisis Communicators Can Work Together

[By Thom Fladung, Hennes Communications] At Hennes Communications, we often tell clients that they have an attorney for the Court of Law. But they have us for the Court of Public Opinion. And those two courts often require different – and at times conflicting – strategies. Attorneys have persuasive arguments for tailoring a strategy completely around […]


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