So You Want To Be A Good rbutr?

In order for rbutr to be succesful, we need the best community on earth – so we are going to do our best to make sure we give you everything you could possibly need to be just that.

First thing first, what does ‘success’ mean for rbutr? Well we are still in the process of creating our Mission Statement, but at the moment it looks something like this:

To link every page on the internet to it’s most appropriate responses, so that no one is ever forced to simply accept what they are ‘told’ by any one source ever again.

What really matters in the mission statement is the ideal of finding ‘the most appropriate responses’. Everyone using rbutr needs to understand what makes a response appropriate, and what makes it ‘the most’ appropriate. Or more specifically for our initial goals, what makes something a ‘rebuttal’ and what makes it ‘the best rebuttal’?

Finding and Adding Rebuttals

There is already a post made about this subject here: How Are Rebuttals Added to rbutr?

It covers the difference between Direct and General rebutals, and what you should be looking for to identify what qualifies a rebuttal as good or bad and whether you should be added it at all or not.

The first rebuttal added to any page is probably the most important, because when there is only one rebuttal listed for any page, it will get all of the attention. So when you are adding a rebuttal to an unrebutted page, it is on you to set the tone of what appears to be acceptable as a rebuttal. As more rebuttals are added though, there is more freedom to give less certain rebuttals a try, and letting the community have a say about it, through the voting process…

Voting on Rebuttals

This is where the real magic happens – this is where we all have an opportunity to collaborate and attempt to identify ‘The Best’ rebuttal (available).

The more voting that happens in rbutr, the more confident we can all be about the rebuttals that are delivered to us, so it is for the best if you try to vote as often as is possible. If something is good, vote it up. If something is bad, vote it down. You should only not vote if you genuinely think the rebuttal is appropriate, but pretty badly done.

What does ‘good’ and ‘bad’ mean in this context? A good rebuttal is any webpage (written article, video or other media) which clearly argues against the claims made in the page being rebutted (source page). In a direct rebuttal, the arguments really should be directly argued against, while in a general rebuttal the rebuttal should be on the correct topic, and presenting an opposing position – either through valid logic, or presentation of verifiable facts which contradict the claims made on the source page. Any rebuttal which does this, should be voted up – no matter how much you like the claims being made, or how much you disagree with the conclusions – a vote in rbutr is not a vote for the conclusion reached; it is a vote for methods used to reach that conclusion. You vote rebuttals up because you genuinely believe that this rebuttal is probably the best argument someone could make in response to the source page.

Bad, on the other had, is any rebuttal which really shouldn’t be in the system at all. Either they spam pages (completely unrelated) are off topic (related, but just not really relevant), or they aren’t even rebuttals at all (they agree, or express a similar or parallel position to the source page). Rebuttals which are on topic and attempting to rebutt the source page, but fundamentally fail to do so because of logical fallacies or relying on falsified data, could also be voted down.

Never vote a rebuttal down just because you disagree with the conclusion of the author. I cannot emphasise this enough – you are voting on the quality of the argument, not the content of the conclusion!

One last time, just for impact: rbutr’s role is not to evaluate the conclusion of rebuttal pages. rbutr’s role is three steps:

  1. Find rebuttals
  2. Evaluate the rebuttal as logically sound or not
  3. Rank theose rebuttals based on their quality in an attempt to find the most compelling rebuttal

So find good rebuttals and add them. When you click through on a rebuttal handed to you by rbutr, be sure to vote!


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