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It’s the last weekend of summer yet again and this year, Electric Picnic have invited The Anti-Room along to share their many views over the festival weekend. Hosted in the Mindfield Arena between 3 to 4 p.m on both Saturday and Sunday, the opinionated women of this blog will engage in debate over female stereotypes and the role of women in the media, both topics, as we have seen on this blog and elsewhere recently, subjects of great interest. There are also talks from Channel 4’s Jon Snow, Leviathan‘s political cabaret, the Science Gallery and of course Chaos Thaoghaire‘s storytelling and games. With such a wide array of music and activities spread across the entire weekend, it’s a fantastic opportunity to take a break from the live music experience to participate in discussion and so do feel free to drop by, get involved and share your thoughts or merely hang back as the banter flows.

However it’s impossible to talk about Electric Picnic without mentioning the music on offer and so here are some tips to consider amongst the hundreds of acts over three days. It’s no easy task to choose the best of the billing this year as as 2010 boasts one of the strongest-ever Irish festival line-ups. That said, if you’d care to join me on a virtual jaunt around Stradbally, here are the most exciting guests in my estimation and hopefully there will be something to interest just about everyone.

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In 2008, four journalists including Anna Carey, Sinéad Gleeson and Edel Coffey set up the anonymous blog The Anti Room as a place to talk about everything from fashion to feminism, sex to sport, music to politics.  The blog was nominated for Best Group Blog at the Irish Blog Awards in 2009. The blog returns and has expanded to welcome a wide range of regular contributors including founders Anna, Edel, Sinéad; journalists Tanya Sweeney, Nadine O’Regan, Lauren Murphy,Jude Leavy, Susan Daly, Aoife Barry, Fiona McCann, Margaret E. Ward;  bloggers Suzy Byrne, Lisa McInerney, Megan McGurk and Naomi McArdle; documentary-maker Aoife Kelleher and writers Arlene Hunt, Nuala Ní Chonchúir and June Caldwell.

We’re on Facebook and on Twitter if you’d like to keep in touch.  Or get in touch at theantiroomATgmailDOTcom.

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blogawards1Being the modest souls that we are, it didn’t occur to us to mention that we made the shortlist for the 2009 Irish Blog Awards. They take place tonight in Cork, and sadly none of us will be there, mainly because we didn’t think we’d make the shortlist. We’d like to say a big thank you to all those lovely judges who voted for us, and to our fellow nominees, the brilliant Blather.net, the ever up-to-date Dublin Blog, A Tangled Web and the excellent The Blog Pound (who must be favourites for the gong).

We’d like to wish all the nominees in every category tonight the very best of luck, particularly to some of our favourites, including Medbh, Annie, Fustar, Fatmammycat, Rick (who’s also the host), Beaut.ie, Red Mum, On the Record, Suzy, Ginger Pixel, Lottie and Fiona.

Thanks also to Grandmaster Mulley who organises this whole shebang.

And if all that isn’t enough to swell our heads, Shane Hegarty has mentioned us in today’s Irish Times as one of ’20 of Ireland’s most essential blogs’. Huzzah!

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One month ago today, the Anti-Room was born. So we’d like to thank everyone who’s joined us so far for reading, for commenting so thoughtfully and politely, for linking to us, and for generally rocking. Here’s to many more months!

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