Name of Company: 
Wikimedia Foundation
Location of Job: 
149 New Montgomery St.
San Francisco , CA
United States
Type of Work: 
Telecommute ok?: 
Time commitment: 
Full Time
How to apply:


The Community Tech Team at Wikimedia Foundation is looking for a Back-end Developer to work on software tools aimed at reducing online harassment on the Wikimedia projects.

The Wikimedia Foundation is launching a new initiative to curb online harassment of Wikipedia editors. We will build new tools that will help detect harassment and stalking, create a safe space for people to report harassment, help wiki administrators to evaluate reports, and block unwanted harassers from our projects. You will be working with a project manager, an analyst, and another developer to tackle these objectives.

This work will be done under the umbrella of the Community Tech team which is focused on meeting the needs of active Wikimedia contributors for improved curation and moderation tools. This is an ideal opportunity for a member of the community to leverage their skills and experience and help the Foundation support the community better.

We use open source tools as much as possible, and always open source our own work ( PHP, Javascript, and Python make up most of our code, but we value using the right tool for the job. Developers at the Foundation have autonomy and responsibility, and can have a large and immediate impact on the future of the site and the movement. Our world is vast and can be complicated, so we value communication, enthusiasm, and eagerness to learn as much as certificates or degrees.

As a Back-end Developer, we’d like you to do these things:

  • Design, develop, test, and deploy new features, improvements and upgrades to various systems and tools used by the Wikipedia community
  • Partner with Foundation staff and volunteers on software design, development, testing and evaluation
  • Assist project analyst with data compilation and analysis
  • Help identify and implement best practices in engineering processes across the team
  • Ensure positive and constructive discussions with the community and the Foundation
  • Work and communicate effectively within a small team distributed across multiple time zones

We’d like you to have these skills:

  • 4+ years programming experience with PHP and MySQL
  • Strong back-end development skills, including working with large data sets
  • Experience with the Wikimedia community, or a similar open source or collaborative community
  • Proven ability to work both independently and as part of a distributed team
  • Experience using a wide variety of communications and collaboration tools, including wikis, mailing lists and IRC
  • BS, MS, or PhD in Computer Science or equivalent in related work experience

And it would be even more awesome if you have this:

In addition to the basic skills needed for being successful, these skills could set you apart from the pack!

  • Programming experience with Python or JavaScript
  • Experience with MediaWiki development
  • Experience with Hadoop or similar frameworks
  • Experience with machine learning or AI technologies
  • Experience with Test-Driven Development and agile methodologies
  • Any other free/open source software development experience is highly welcome
  • Understanding of the free culture movement
  • Experience with online community moderation or anti-harassment tools

Show us your stuff!

If you have any existing open source software that you've developed (these could be your own software or patches to other packages), please share the URLs for the source. Links to GitHub, etc. are exceptionally useful.


About the Wikimedia Foundation

The Wikimedia Foundation is the non-profit organization that supports and hosts Wikipedia and its sister free knowledge sites. Wikipedia consists of nearly 40 million articles across hundreds of languages. Every month, more than 80,000 volunteer editors contribute to Wikipedia. Based in San Francisco, California, the Wikimedia Foundation is an audited, 501(c)(3) non-profit that is funded primarily through donations and grants. It currently employs over 240 staff members.

At the Foundation, we build technology to help people everywhere access Wikipedia, across devices and in nearly 300 languages. We engineer privacy for our readers and editors so they can safely and securely explore Wikipedia. We create programs and initiatives to make Wikipedia freely available to more people in more parts of the world. We build new tools for the community of editors so they can continue to improve and grow Wikipedia. Roughly a quarter of our budget goes to supporting the community that make the site possible, including through grantmaking programs that enable volunteers and enrich the information on the sites.

The Wikimedia Foundation is an equal opportunity employer, and we encourage people with a diverse range of backgrounds to apply.

Benefits & Perks *

  • Fully paid medical, dental and vision coverage for employees and their eligible families (yes, fully paid premiums!)
  • The Wellness Program provides reimbursement for mind, body and soul activities such as fitness memberships, massages, cooking classes and much more
  • The 401(k) retirement plan offers matched contributions at 4% of annual salary
  • Flexible and generous time off - vacation, sick and volunteer days, plus 19 paid holidays - including the last week of the year.
  • Family friendly! 100% paid new parent leave for seven weeks plus an additional five weeks for pregnancy, flexible options to phase back in after leave, fully equipped lactation room.
  • For those emergency moments - long and short term disability, life insurance (2x salary) and an employee assistance program
  • Pre-tax savings plans for health care, child care, elder care, public transportation and parking expenses
  • Telecommuting and flexible work schedules available
  • Appropriate fuel for thinking and coding (aka, a pantry full of treats) and monthly massages to help staff relax
  • Great colleagues - diverse staff and contractors speaking dozens of languages from around the world, fantastic intellectual discourse, mission-driven and intensely passionate people


* for benefits eligible staff, benefits may vary by location

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