What We have Achieved So Far

As we approach three and a half years since beta launch, I just wanted to take a moment to put together a post outlining some of our achievements.

The biggest of which is the fact that rbutr is still the most widely used web annotation plugin online, and has been for a while. You can see our Chrome plugin user count in the Chrome webstore. We also have the Firefox and Opera plugins which add another few thousand to that count.

For context I want to point out that rbutr has had zero investment. We received some funding from the Startup Chile program in the beginning (around $20k because I was originally accepted for a different project, then swapped to rbutr after arriving), but beyond that everything else has been done by volunteers, Craig coding part time, and myself sort-of-full-time.

Given such a scattered, unpaid and ad-hoc team, I really think that the following accomplishments are quite remarkable, and I really want to thank everyone who has participated in this journey and helped out along the way. rbutr continues to be a community effort, and always will be.

rbutr Features

  1. Core rbutr functionality in 3 minutes including: rebuttal alerts, registration, submission, twitter reply widget, rbutr Frame.
  2. Reddit Reply BotA++ Mod Approved in Bot Watchman
  3. The best of rbutr – coming back soon with community participation!

Competitions and Awards

  1. Semi Finalist in the 2012 Knight News Challenge (52 selected out of 1078 applications)
  2. Scholarship winner to attend the 2013 Creative Innovation Conference.
  3. Winner of SXSW Win30s competition for Best Bootstrapped.
  4. Third place at the 2014 SydStart pitching competition.


  1. A New Web Browser Plugin Makes It Easy to Follow Debates by Linking Arguments to Counter Arguments Online
    25 July 2012 –  William Bull, Skeptic
  2. How to Make Money in Tech
    27 June 2012 – Erik Sherman, Inc. : “Talk about a brilliant idea”
  3. Spotlight on: rbutr: Facilitating Online Discussion
     26 June 2012 – European Journalism Centre
  4. Rbutr finds contrary opinions for stories you’re reading (IJNet, Mashable, Richard Dawkins Foundation)
    14 June 2012 – Tracie Powell, Poynter
  5. rbutr Tries to Burst Your Digital Bubble
    13 June 2012 –  Scott Finn, WUSF News
  6. rbutr: A Simple Way To Follow Online Debates
    5 June 2012 – MakeUseOf.com
  7. [REVIEW] Can a Browser App Pop the Internet Filter Bubble?
    1 June 2012 – Dave Copeland, Read Write Web
  8. rbutr Helps You Follow Online Debates
    30 May 2012 – Adam Pash, Lifehacker
  9. Opening Up Scientific Discourse Online
    29 May 2012 –  Marie, The Strange Quark
  10. Avoid Being Misinformed with rbutr
    29 May 2012 –  Pallab De, Techie Buzz
  11. 10 Startups That Could Change The Face of News Forever
    20 April 2012 – Martin Carsten, Memeburn 
  12. Tool to sift truth from web of lies vies for media innovation award
    17 April 2012 – Andrew Colley, The Australian
  13. RBUTR is the newest tool in the skeptic arsenal
    2 April 2012 – Tim Farley, SkepTools
  14. You’re Wrong! There’s an app for that
    6 September 2012 – David Wilson, Sydney Morning Herald
  15. Someone’s Wrong On the Internet
    27 February 2013 – Maynard, ABC Newcastle
  16. The Internet Argues With Itself
    23 january 2014 – Susanna Freymark, Daily Telegraph
  17. Rbutr makes it easier for anyone to flag misinformation on the Web
    17 February 2014 – Paul Sawers, The Next Web
  18. rbutr – The Critical Thinking Plugin
    22 May 2014 – Oliver Lovell, Post Growth
  19. rbutr – Being Intellectually Robust on the Internet
    27 June 2014 – Jonathan Pearce, SkepticInc

Organisational Supporters and Advisors

  1. The James Randi Educational Foundation
  2. The Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science
  3. Michael Shermer and The Skeptic Society
  4. Aubrey De Grey
  5. Paul Willis and the Royal Institution of Australia
  6. Richard Saunders and SkepticZone
  7. Skeptical Science

Podcasts and Interviews

  1. The Skeptic Zone, Maynard. October 2012.
  2. The Token Skeptic, Kylie Sturgess. October 2012.
  3. EvidenceMag, Armi Legge. June 2013
  4. Diffusion Radio, Ian Woolf. October 2013.
  5. EvidenceMag, Armi Legge. June 2013
  6. Meet the Amazing TAMers – Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science. Filmed July 2013.
  7. Battling Misinformation with Shane Greenup of rbutr, Bentley Davis. August 2014.
  8. NYRD Radio, Alexis Ohanian. November 2014

Public Presentations

  1. TAM 2012 Workshop – The Future of Skepticism Online: Crowd Sourced Activism. Las Vegas, USA, July 2012.
  2. Australian Skeptics National Convention.Melbourne, Australia, November 2012.
  3. CFI London – Journalism, Churnalism and Media Bias. London, UK, December 2012.
  4. Sydney Atheists – Think Again. Sydney, Australia,  March 2013.
  5. Sydney Skeptics. Sydney, Australia,  April 2013.
  6. TAM 2013 Workshop – Crowdsourcing Skepticism. Las Vegas, USA, July 2013.
  7. TAM 2013 Main Stage – The Great Global Discussion. Las Vegas, USA, July 2013.
  8. Reason4Reason – Crowdsourcing Critical Thinking. San Francisco, USA, July 2013.
  9. European Skeptic Congress – The Great Global Discussion. Stockholm, Sweden, September 2013.
  10. Ignite Sydney 2013 – Crowdsourcing Critical Thinking. Sydney, Australia,  November 2013.
  11. Nerd Nite – The (mis)information Superhighway. Sydney, Australia, March 2014.
  12. SydStart 2014 Pitching Competition – Third Place. Sydney, Australia,  September 2014.
  13. Melbourne Biohack Meetup 2.0 – Closing the Gap. Melbourne, Australia, May 2015.



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