My Blog Award Plan

The Irish Blog Awards shortlists have been announced.

Congratulations to one and all.

However, congratulations also due to Damien Mulley, who thought the shindig up and has done the runnning on it. Not just congratulations, I think. I think he’s also due a token of thanks.

Ireland is a funny place. We don’t usually rush at strangers and embrace them as our friends. Go to any conference, gathering etc and you’ll see people in small clumps of two or three, talking to the people they already know and all looking out suspiciously at everyone else.

These blog awards, along with the Planet of the Blogs and Irishblogs aggregators, have done a great deal to turn lots of little island nations into some kind of coherent whole. Looking at the longlist, I have a flavour of what Ireland’s online community is like.

Bonkers mostly. Well, ok, smart, funny, truthful,excited, and bonkers. But it undoubtedly is a community now- in a way it wasn’t before. And that change is going to be important, in a way I can’t really put my finger on yet. I even like Rick O’Shea now, a task I would have thought beyond the power of even Mortal Ken.
Damien can take a great deal of the credit for all of that.

So, simply, what I’m going to do when I’m going along for the night, is pay €10 instead of €5 at the door. If everyone does the same it will cover Damien’s hotel and travel costs, as he outlined them here. And if he has something left over he can buy himself a hat. Or some kind of talking orange. We’ll leave those details up to him.

And if I’m the only one doing it, he can buy himself most of a drink with the fiver.


  • That’s a great idea Simon. I was thinking more high-tech by using Pledgebank or Fundable but this is much simpler! 🙂

  • copernicus says:

    I’m disappointed tuppence or fifie didn’t make it into the group blog category. Obvious failure to deploy canvassing skills to the fullest. Ye got my vote anyway.

    Pity there aren’t more blawgs, enough to establish a category in. Maybe next year. I’m thinking about establishing one myself called The Midnight Court and modelling it after the stuff you see in the American blawgosphere; listing current awareness, speaking events (Geoffrey Robertson QC was here in November for example, would have been nice to know and I don’t think it was listed on Irish Law, but on the Hibernian Journal website only) and perhaps a little bit of jurisprudential exposition.

  • […] Speaking of Damien, Simon McGarr (over at made an excellent suggestion regarding Damien’s expenses etc: So, simply, what I’m going to do when I’m going along for the night, is pay €10 instead of €5 at the door. If everyone does the same it will cover Damien’s hotel and travel costs, as he outlined them here. And if he has something left over he can buy himself a hat. Or some kind of talking orange. We’ll leave those details up to him. […]

  • Fergal says:

    Copernicus, you might consider signing up the irishlaw mailing list.

    I’ve only been on it myself for a month or two, but they sent round an upcoming events mail the other week which was handy to have, as many events (Robertson is a case in point) are poorly advertised.

    Also, your Midnight Court idea is excellent. You could even run two paralell sites, one “online law review” for full-length articles, and a blog to facilitate a more discussion-based thinking-aloud format. Just a suggestion. Whatever the format, I’d love to have a go at something like that, so if interested, give me a shout.

  • fústar says:

    Go for it copernicus, you bould thing.

    You can’t simply (virtually) kip on my bloggy sofa forever you know (though there will, of course, always be room at the inn).

    There are punters out there who want to hear what you’ve got to say (and you’ve plenty), so gird up your loins and get cracking. This time next year I expect a strong showing from you in the shortlists m’boy.

  • copernicus says:

    I’d be very interested in having someone like your good self on board Fergal and I definitely don’t think I could manage a blawg alone between work and looming exams down the Kings Inns.

    I don’t know what blawg feeds, if any, you subscribe to but stuff like May It Please the Court, Opinio Juris and are good starting places.

    You tuppenceworth-style suggestion is excellent. If it was possible to get a community of lawyers and students together, it could really be something to run the two-sites side by side.

    Might also be a few briefs in it in the long term.

    I’m not au fait with blogging technology at the moment, but I’ll definitely look into the practicalities. I don’t even mind not being the main mover and shaker behind the whole thing as long as I’m involved at some level.

  • copernicus says:

    I don’t see an email addy around Fergal. I can be reached at theapothecaryguy at yahoo dot co dot uk. Let’s do lunch.

    Fústar, thanks for the cushion space. My interest in fairies and freemasons is unlikely to wane in the near future.

  • Fergal says:

    Sorry, forgot to include that: fergal at tuppenceworth dot ie.

    I’ve been having a think about this and think it’s something we should go for. Give me a shout and we can do that lunch

  • Sinéad says:

    That’s a great idea re Damien. Apart from hotel costs and expenses, there’s the matter of all the unpaid hours of manpower in getting this off the ground.

  • fústar says:

    Don’t encourage him Fergal. Between his regular contributions to my blog, and his new venture with your good self, the Kings Inn experience will go tits up for want of time!

    Seriously though…this sounds an excellent idea, and I wish you both the best.

  • […] So yes, I’m not that child who, as it happens, was also called Oliver. There have been a few posts, most recently Simon’s suggesting that there should be a whip-around of some sort for me. No need. My hotel stay is now being paid for by Microsoft Ireland and I am hugely grateful. A big thank you to Clare Dillon for making the no-strings attached offer. But have I told you how I’d prefer all my readers to use Internet Explorer to view my site and … Nope, Microsoft just like us bloggers so they have asked for nothing in return, like many other people who have kindly offered to paypal me money and so forth. Thank you everyone. […]

  • Rick says:

    Thanks Simon… I think that’s almost a compliment…..? 😉

    Great idea about Damien – much kudos due to him for getting all this off the ground and the inherent profile it will bring the community…


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