One of the most significant obstacles in carrying out rebuttal research is lack of access to critical information. Activists are unlikely to discover what discussions have taken place with state agents or to have access to internal documents of the company for example. In such cases, activists can help by reframing the issue and forcing the company into a response position. It is effective to challenge what the company ought reasonably to have known and done. If the local police shot at protestors around a mine site, investigate the nature of discussions with police; if none, why not? If there were discussions what is disclosed? If you did not know, you ought to have done. If you did not act, you ought to have done so. Turn denial and claims of ignorance into the problem.

While it can be effective to reframe a specific case, it may also be useful – when faced with corporate denials and obfuscations – to examine the company’s track record more widely. Showing a pattern of action of inaction can shift the perception of regulators, customers or shareholders.

Use due diligence standards to question failures of knowledge and action. Using legal concepts such as duty of care and negligence can also help to reframe the actions and failures of the company, and call their protestations of non-responsibility into question. In some cases, turning the corporate claims into the problem can be the first step to legislative reforms [see section x]