On Thu 6th, it was time to write scenarios for our as of yet quite unfocussed project. The task was for each four member to write on scenario. To start with, we created a matrix of possible user groups in one dimension and usage moods in the other.
|(3) Want to president||Why do my parents work so much|
|Young voter / Student
|When I start working, don’t wanna pay taxes||I got to study for free|
|Working age / Taxpayer
|(5) Elections: what does eg. the parliament actually do?||(1) Why so high taxes?
Taxes should be allocated differently
|Elections are coming
Think about the next gen. / legacy
|(4) Why is public healthcare so slow to get into?
Why is my pension so low?
|Things are so much better in Finland than elsewhere|
|Foreigner||(2) Benefits of being a Finn|
From these possibilites each member selected one (well, I started another one, too), which are marked with bold in the table.
The main difficulty with scenario writing at this phase is that the concept is very loosely defined, so describing interaction and even user needs is very much an imaginative process. Because of this complication we had to postpone final writing after the class. This process is still underway. The first scenario, however, is already written:
Scenario 1: Why So High Taxes?
Tiina is an employed Finnish citizen in her 30s who reads some news and sometimes votes, but doesn’t put much effort into it because she feels her life is busy.
She doesn’t know why she’s paying so much in taxes. She wants to know what her taxes are spent on.If she doesn’t find the explanation satisfactory, she wants to know what she can do to make her taxes lower.
A Saturday morning, she’s having a coffee with a similar friend of hers. They have a laptop (or phone?) with them and search for “high taxes”. The stumble upon politicsfordummies.com, where they easily find a section on taxes. The app gives them a good overview on what kinds of services and target groups taxes go. They also see that in addition to state and municipal taxes, VAT and other kinds of taxes are levied.
The whole picture feels quite complicated, but they get the general feeling that there’s a lot services either the government or the city provides that are taxpayer-funded. Tiina’s friend is satisfied with the explanation but Tiina herself feels she would like to make a change.
Tiina presumes voting is the only thing she can do to influence taxation in general but that she can somehow convert her income to capital gains make her taxes lower.
Tiina finds the latter common misconception bunked in the app’s info section. She also finds a list of other actions she can do to use her influence, such as contacting officials, joining a party, or trying to influence her friends. However, it seems too complicated for her busy schedule and she just decides to keep voting.
The full presentation with all scenarios can be found online.