[Tor www-team] Proposed personas

Silviu Riley silviu.riley at gmail.com
Thu Jan 9 11:10:40 UTC 2014

I've never used something like this personas concept before, but it
generated an idea. If we could refine the personas, to make sure they
conform to what our users or visitors to the site actually are like, it
will improve our thinking and design.

For example, the student persona got me thinking about using Tor on
public/school wifi:


According to federal prosecutors, Tor played a key role in helping FBI
> agents identify a Harvard student suspected of e-mailing a hoax bomb
> threat<http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/12/17/21943608-harvard-student-tried-to-dodge-exam-with-bomb-hoax-fbi-says>to university officials so he wouldn't have to take a final exam. To
> conceal his Harvard IP address, he used Tor, but in a fatal mistake, *he
> also used the school's Wi-Fi network to connect to the anonymity service*.
> Investigators, according to a criminal complaint<http://www.wbur.org/2013/12/18/pdf-criminal-complaint-harvard-bomb-threat>,
> took a hard look at everyone who used Tor at the time the threats were sent
> and ultimately fingered 20-year-old Eldo Kim of Cambridge, Massachusetts as
> the perpetrator.

(Emphasis mine)

So let's think about the personas and their use of Tor and the website more.

I like how Tails does their download page. They have a first-time user
section before any downloads are presented:


First time user?
>    - If you don't know what a metadata or a man-in-the-middle attack is.
>    - If you think no-one can eavesdrop on your communications because you
>    are using Tor.
>    - If you have no notion of how Tails works.
> *Then, check first the about <https://tails.boum.org/about/index.en.html>
> and warning <https://tails.boum.org/doc/about/warning/index.en.html> pages
> to make sure that Tails is the right tool for you and that you understand
> well its limitations.*


On Thu, Jan 9, 2014 at 5:36 AM, Rey Dhuny <rey at spcshp.com> wrote:

>  I've taken the liberty of sketching out some personas so we have
> somewhere to start from and build on:
> ```
> ## Tony Johnson, Student, aged 21
> Tony is a second year student at university who is studying international
> business. Tony has recently heard about Tor through recent mentions in the
> national news and would like to discover more about it Particularly he has
> heard from a friend that it could be used to protect his web browsing
> whilst using the university campus public wifi.
> ## Angela Thomas, Journalist, aged 39
> Angela is a journalist who has been writing about online privacy for the
> past year and would like to write a feature about Tor. Although she has
> previously experimented with Tor's browser bundle she would like further
> information of how the Tor infrastructure functions and the technical
> details behind how it enables online anonymity.
> ## Stephanie Davis, Security Researcher, aged 28
> Stephanie is a security researcher working for a think tank. She has been
> a user of Tor since December 2011 and is a strong proponent for an open
> web. Since finding out about Tor, Stephanie has become involved in the Tor
> community contributing fixes and features to the Tor code base and engaging
> with other Tor contributers using the mailing lists and IRC.
> ## Amrit Ghuna, Doctor, aged 58
> Amrit is a Doctor of Pharmacy who has been practicing for 19 years.
> Although he now lives in suburbia outside the city, before he moved himself
> and his family to Sweden he suffered political oppression at the hands of
> the government, eventually being labeled a dissident. After seeing first
> hand the effects of a restricted and monitored internet he was enthused to
> read about Tor in the local newspaper and would very much like to make a
> donation to the Tor Project.
> ```
> I've also added it to the wiki:
> https://trac.torproject.org/projects/tor/wiki/Website#ProposedPersonas
> Thoughts welcome and requested!
> Rey
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