Software Engineer, Trust and Safety Product

  • Wikimedia Foundation
  • Remote
  • 05 Jul, 2024

Job Description


The Wikimedia Foundation is looking for a software engineer to join the Trust and Safety Product team. As a software engineer, you will be responsible for building features to keep our communities safe from abuse, harassment, vandalism, and harmful or illicit content.  In this role, you will work in a fully-remote, geographically-distributed environment, where we value teamwork and a consensus-oriented approach. You will be writing open source code for collaborative experiences supporting over a billion users at a place that believes we're all more successful when everyone has a good work-life balance.

The Trust and Safety Product team is an interdisciplinary product team developing technology that helps counteract efforts to harm civil discourse on our platforms, the integrity of the content, or other users of our projects. We are seeking a software engineer to join us in this effort to protect our users and our projects.

Currently, we are working on a broad set of tools related to user privacy and protection. You can see more details in our backlog. Your daily work will include contributing new patches or pull requests for existing features, estimating new work, participating in code reviews, collaborating with a designer, or helping a volunteer engineer get their code shaped up. Because of the sensitive nature of the tools we build, we interact with database administrators, security engineers, and our legal team on a regular basis. Our work goes beyond regular product development into topics such as privacy, security, abuse mitigation, content moderation and legal compliance.

The team is fully staffed with a Product Manager, Engineering Manager, Product Designer, Research Analyst, Data Analyst, Community Liaison, Test Engineers, and several Software Engineers, of course.

You will be working on, and improving, a codebase that has evolved over two decades. Much of our framework code was developed in-house, so you'll need to be comfortable learning through research, reviewing patches, and reading documentation. PHP and JavaScript make up most of our code. 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 consider communication, enthusiasm, and eagerness to learn as important as certificates or degrees.

You are responsible for:

  • Developing, testing, and deploying new features, improvements and upgrades to various systems and tools used by administrators and staff.
  • Writing multilingual, accessible, and performant user interfaces using PHP, JavaScript, VueJS, and CSS.
  • Documenting your contributions to our codebase in our technical documentation and our features’ documentation.
  • Contributing to projects that require handling sensitive data and private information, complying with privacy and security regulations.
  • Providing support in abuse investigations on our platform, helping identify sources and causes of incidents, and proposing ideas to mitigate their impact.
  • Developing expertise in the Trust and Safety area, which includes, security, privacy, abuse mitigation, content moderation and legal compliance.
  • Extending the capabilities of the MediaWiki stack to serve diverse community needs by incorporating possibilities that are offered by new tooling or technical advances.
  • Working across teams to proactively reduce technical debt by refactoring code, updating testing frameworks, and reviewing code from other engineers.

Skills and Experience:

  • 3+ years of related professional or volunteering experience in software engineering roles, including frontend and backend development, with an emphasis on backend.
  • Experience with Object-Oriented development using a scripting language (such as PHP, Python, Ruby, or JavaScript). Most of our work is in PHP and JavaScript.
  • Experience converting design mockups into functional components, incorporating performance and accessibility into the features using well-documented and readable code.
  • Focused software engineering: writing unit and integration tests, proactively addressing security and code review feedback, and thoughtfully balancing tradeoffs.
  • Strong written communication skills as our collaboration largely happens online, on chats, wikis, documents and tickets.

Qualities that are important to us:

  • The desire to make meaningful contributions to knowledge equity, free culture, and open access.
  • An emphasis on communicating clearly in both synchronous and asynchronous channels.
  • The willingness to participate in technical discussions, proposing solutions to technical challenges, participating in code reviews and receiving feedback.
  • An eagerness and curiosity to solve technical problems, trying things out and investigating issues, and supporting the work of others.
  • The skill to effectively work with documentation, writing clearly and concisely, and navigating existing documentation in search for answers.
  • A sensitivity for the problems we are solving, empathy for our users, and the tact to handle the content and information we process.

Additionally, we’d love it if you have:

  • Experience with MediaWiki development or as a contributor to Wikimedia projects.
  • Experience with legacy codebases and/or experience in free/open source software development experience.
  • Experience with online community moderation, vandalism prevention and other Trust and Safety concepts and practices

About the Wikimedia Foundation

The Wikimedia Foundation is the nonprofit organization that operates Wikipedia and the other Wikimedia free knowledge projects. Our vision is a world in which every single human can freely share in the sum of all knowledge. We believe that everyone has the potential to contribute something to our shared knowledge, and that everyone should be able to access that knowledge freely. We host Wikipedia and the Wikimedia projects, build software experiences for reading, contributing, and sharing Wikimedia content, support the volunteer communities and partners who make Wikimedia possible, and advocate for policies that enable Wikimedia and free knowledge to thrive. 

The Wikimedia Foundation is a charitable, not-for-profit organization that relies on donations. We receive donations from millions of individuals around the world, with an average donation of about $15. We also receive donations through institutional grants and gifts. The Wikimedia Foundation is a United States 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization with offices in San Francisco, California, USA.

As an equal opportunity employer, the Wikimedia Foundation values having a diverse workforce and continuously strives to maintain an inclusive and equitable workplace. We encourage people with a diverse range of backgrounds to apply. We do not discriminate against any person based upon their race, traits historically associated with race, religion, color, national origin, sex, pregnancy or related medical conditions, parental status, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, age, status as a protected veteran, status as an individual with a disability, genetic information, or any other legally protected characteristics.

The Wikimedia Foundation is a remote-first organization with staff members including contractors based in 40+ countries*. Salaries at the Wikimedia Foundation are set in a way that is competitive, equitable, and consistent with our values and culture. The anticipated annual pay range of this position for applicants based within the United States is US$ 85,925  to US$ 134,289  with multiple individualized factors, including cost of living in the location, being the determinants of the offered pay. For applicants located outside of the US, the pay range will be adjusted to the country of hire. We neither ask for nor take into consideration the salary history of applicants. The compensation for a successful applicant will be based on their skills, experience and location. 

*Please note that we are currently able to hire in the following countries: Australia, Austria, Bangladesh, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Egypt, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Ghana, Greece, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Kenya, Mexico, Netherlands, Nigeria, Peru, Poland, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Uganda, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States of America and Uruguay.  Our non-US employees are hired through a local third party Employer of Record (EOR).

We periodically review this list to streamline to ensure alignment with our hiring requirements. 

All applicants can reach out to their recruiter to understand more about the specific pay range for their location during the interview process.

If you are a qualified applicant requiring assistance or an accommodation to complete any step of the application process due to a disability, you may contact us at or +1 (415) 839-6885.

More information

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