If someone gives you flack about wearing shorts in the winter, tell them to chill out. Flack is a criticism. Flack also refers to anti-aircraft guns, and then sometimes it’s spelled flak.

Flack as a criticism comes from the military sense, as it feels like an attack. A flack (or flak) jacket will protect your body from projectiles, but it doesn’t protect you from insults. Flack is also a word for a promoter. If you publish a book, you’ll need to flack — or promote it — yourself or hire a professional flack who will convince everyone to buy it. The German root is Fliegerabwehrkanone, "aviator-defense gun."

Definitions of flack
  1. noun
    intense adverse criticism
    synonyms: attack, blast, fire, flak
    see moresee less
    type of:
    criticism, unfavorable judgment
    disapproval expressed by pointing out faults or shortcomings
  2. noun
    a slick spokesperson who can turn any criticism to the advantage of their employer
    synonyms: flack catcher, flak, flak catcher
    see moresee less
    type of:
    interpreter, representative, spokesperson, voice
    an advocate who represents someone else's policy or purpose
  3. noun
    artillery designed to shoot upward at airplanes
    synonyms: ack-ack, ack-ack gun, antiaircraft, antiaircraft gun, flak, pom-pom
    see moresee less
    Bofors gun
    an automatic double-barreled antiaircraft gun
    type of:
    a weapon that discharges a missile at high velocity (especially from a metal tube or barrel)
DISCLAIMER: These example sentences appear in various news sources and books to reflect the usage of the word ‘flack'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of or its editors. Send us feedback
Word Family

Look up flack for the last time

Close your vocabulary gaps with personalized learning that focuses on teaching the words you need to know.

VocabTrainer -'s Vocabulary Trainer