Rebuttal alive on the net

 ENTREPRENEUR Shane Greenup of Engadine spent the best part of 12 months convinced his latest idea was available already.

After searching the internet and realising that no one had his idea, he dedicated his time to creating it.

That is how he came up with rbutr, a browser plugin that informs people whenever the page they are reading has been disputed elsewhere on the net. 

In other words, it provides an opposing opinion to any information on the web.

‘‘At the moment, the web is passive and we’re trying to make it more educational — to get people to critically analyse what they’re reading,’’ he said.

‘‘I hope to literally change the way the internet works. It is not so different to what Google does and I can see it being something in the longer run it will find interesting.’’

The home page lists many categories where information has been disputed and rebutted  including vaccination, science and global warming.

‘‘I spent a year ignoring the idea as I was sure someone else had done it; it seemed too easy,’’ he said. ‘‘I had a prototype within a month. Now there are more than 5000 users.’’

His vision has been awarded with a scholarship to Creative Innovation Asia Pacific 2013  in Melbourne.

Entrepreneurs have a chance to seek funding, which is critical to take their idea from the kitchen table to the world stage.

‘‘I will pitch the idea and let [potential investors] know we are looking for partners to reach our first million users. Growth is important,’’ Mr Greenup said.

A great idea: Shane Greenup hopes his browser plugin will encourage critical thinking. Picture: Jane Dyson

A great idea: Shane Greenup hopes his browser plugin will encourage critical thinking. Picture: Jane Dyson