Kelsey McKinney, Defector

Kelsey McKinney


Contact Kelsey

Discover and connect with journalists and influencers around the world, save time on email research, monitor the news, and more.

Start free trial

  • Unknown
  • Defector
  • Vox
  • Deadspin
  • STAT
  • Teen Vogue
  • GQ
  • Pacific Standard
  • Vanity Fair
  • The Outline
  • The AV Club
  • and more…

Past articles by Kelsey:

The Money Is In All The Wrong Places

You can always tell who in Hollywood has family money by their Instagrams. People like Dakota Johnson, who have a Hollywood lineage deeper than the Mariana Trench, post only rarely. They post about social justice causes they care about, or personal announcements. Even someone like actress and musician Maya Hawke mostly posts previews of upcoming […] → Read More


The difference between the Grammys’ Song, Album, and Record of the Year categories, explained

Here are the nominees in the Grammys’ top categories for 2021, and how to keep the different categories straight. → Read More

Slate Podcast Host Mike Pesca Suspended Following Internal Discussion About Use Of Racial Slur

Mike Pesca, host of Slate’s daily podcast, The Gist, has been suspended from the company indefinitely according to an internal memo sent to staffers late last night that has been obtained by Defector. → Read More

Candies To Stress Eat While You Watch The World Series Game Tonight, Ranked

This World Series is depressing as hell, just like many other things that are happening right now and which we have no control over. Neither the Houston Astros nor the Washington Nationals (my team) have managed to win a home game. At Game 3, people were literally crying as we left the stadium, which was mainly because of beer consumption but also because being disappointed alongside people you… → Read More

There Are Only Two Acceptable Wedding Dress Codes

Yesterday, I was having a nice coffee outside with a friend who was telling me about an upcoming trip. He and his girlfriend were going to a wedding in Austin. I, a famous lover a good wedding, wanted details. There’s a moment when you ask people who wear dresses about weddings that never comes up with people who wear suits and yet here he was making a face and saying, “we’re really excited to… → Read More

What Art Briles Brought To The Town That Never Asked For Him

MOUNT VERNON, Texas – There had never been a line like this before. Not here, at least. It was ridiculous, obscene. The first people in line queued up just before 4:30 p.m. They stood there, up against the closed ticket window, huddling underneath the small awning as it poured rain, and then, when the rain stopped, they waited patiently in the brutal east Texas humidity. By the time the windows… → Read More

Inside TheMaven's Plan To Turn Sports Illustrated Into A Rickety Content Mill

Now that Sports Illustrated’s three owners, Meredith Corp., Authentic Brands Group, and TheMaven, have completed the callous layoff of half of Sports Illustrated’s newsroom and finalized a deal that gives control of the publication to TheMaven, a wannabe tech company helmed by notorious scumbags Ross Levinsohn and James Heckman, the future of Sports Illustrated is coming into focus. It’s not… → Read More

At Least 16 MLB Fans Were Maimed By Foul Balls This Year

For the first time since Major League Baseball required the extension of foul ball nets to the ends of the dugouts before the 2018 season, individual teams have begun to take the injuries suffered by their fans seriously. → Read More

The Ballpark In Arlington Is The Kind Of Place Texas Always Loses

Everything in North Texas feels brand new. The roads are freshly paved. The high school football stadiums shine under their megawatt lights. The suburbs are littered with shopping malls, none of them more than 40 years old. There aren’t many trees, and even the grass has been planted, bought from Home Depot and laid out in lines and watered before the sun comes up and after it goes down each… → Read More

All I Want To Do Is Create Havoc As A Terrible Goose

Before last week, I had dabbled in video games the way a vegan dabbles at a barbecue: finding a single cucumber here or a slice of grilled eggplant there that I might enjoy, but always leaving unsatisfied and hungry. I played Mario Kart as a child, and Dance Dance Revolution as a preteen. In high school, I played the Sims, and recently, I tried to enjoy City Skylines. But my attention span was… → Read More

Best Sports To Read To, Ranked

The thing about reading a book is that it is absolutely, undeniably a sport. Not only does reading a book require endurance, concentration, and a good amount of practice, it is also occasionally competitive. For sure, working so hard to get AR points for reading The Golden Compass or some long doorstop of a book were a sport. → Read More

We Have No Idea How Many High Schools Are Failing Title IX Athletics

No one is keeping tabs on the high schools. Title IX, passed in 1972, guarantees that all institutions that receive federal funding must provide equal opportunities, facilities, and supplies to students regardless of their gender. In athletics, that means that for every position on a team available to a boy, there must be a position for a girl. Since the passage of Title IX, girls participation… → Read More

More High School Girls Are Playing Tackle Football Than Ever

No high schools in America offer a girls tackle football team. If a girl wants to play football, she has to go out for the boys’ team. There’s no guarantee that she’ll make the team, but Title IX guarantees that every sport offered only to boys at the high school level has to allow girls a fair shot at tryouts. → Read More

This Football League Was Built For Girls Who Love To Hit

SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH — Laura Goetz is really good. → Read More

The Football Team In Euphoria Is Complete Trash

It has been two weeks since the finale of HBO’s R-rated Riverdale knock-off, Euphoria, aired to glowing reviews. Everyone wants to talk about how the show found its earnest heart, and whether Jules will come back, and how all the teens may be doomed by sexting and drugs, but no one wants to talk about how East Highland’s football team is a big bag of trash. → Read More

Baseball players, listen to me: stop wearing shirts under vest jerseys

Attention all baseball men! Have you been outside? It is thousands of degrees outside and somehow even more humid. Terrible! It is almost August. And so I say to you: it is time to stop wearing these ridiculous t-shirts under your jerseys. → Read More

Hair-Pulling Considered Rude In Every Sport But Football

In the midst of play a few weeks ago, WNBA player Liz Cambage’s arm got all wrapped up in her opponent Kalani Brown’s hair. At first the tangle seemed to be an accident, but soon there was pushing and shoving and intentional hair-pulling, and Cambage walked away from the encounter with a flagrant foul. → Read More

What A Foul Ball Can Do

Laura Cusik and her husband Richard loved baseball. They loved it so much for so long that it became a part of their marriage. When they had kids, they taught them to love the game, too: to root for the home team (the Braves), and learn the players names, and to stretch in the seventh inning. They were a baseball family. But the Cusiks don’t love baseball anymore. They can’t. Not after what… → Read More

Here's What Every Member Of The USMNT Has To Say About U.S. Soccer's Wage Inequality

When the United States Women’s National Team takes the field for their World Cup knockout-round game against Spain today, they will try to forget everything else: their personal drama, their fears, their ambitions. Oh, and the gender discrimination lawsuit they filed against U.S. Soccer, the sport’s governing body. The class action lawsuit claims that the women’s team are paid about a quarter of… → Read More


A-Rod loves to use the baseball emoji on Instagram. But what does he think it means?

The emoji weren’t the point, or at least they weren’t supposed to be. In late January, singer, actress, and World of Dance judge Jennifer Lopez posted a thirst trap on Instagram. Like many famous person ’grams, it was screengrabbed by Comments by Celebs, an Instagram account that tracks celebrities’ online activity. In the photo, Lopez wears a rose-colored bikini top and high-waisted leggings,… → Read More