Location: San Francisco, CA

Hours: 40 hours per week

Duration: 12 weeks 

Summary

If you’re a current law student or recent law school graduate passionate about free knowledge and open source issues, applying to our legal fellowship program can provide an immersive in-house experience with specific education and training in the areas of Internet law and free knowledge organizations.

Description

The Foundation faces a myriad of legal issues ranging from complex copyright questions to international freedom of speech issues to mobile development to internal corporate compliance. Because of the wide array of legal issues, the fellows will be assigned challenging projects based on their particular interests and strengths. These projects range from researching various legal questions to drafting licensing agreements to developing internal and external policies.

Each fellow will receive individualized projects that they will be expected to spearhead under the supervision and guidance of an attorney from the Legal Department.

Fellows will work closely with their supervising attorney - attending and participating in internal and external meetings, collaborating on projects, receiving feedback and support, and generally learning about the practical dimensions of practicing law in-house at a web-based company.

When the opportunity exists, the Legal Department will work with a fellow's university to facilitate earning academic credits and/or receiving funding for the fellow's time at the Wikimedia Foundation.

Requirements

  • High energy for and commitment to the Wikimedia Foundation's free knowledge mission, including an interest in free culture issues, open source software, Creative Commons licensing, etc.
  • A very good sense of humor and the ability to excel in a fast-paced, multitasking environment that demands fast turn-around.
  • Intellectual curiosity and flexibility that makes them enjoy tackling difficult and ambiguous problems in creative ways.  Students with strong research backgrounds are preferred.
  • Experience working with large online user communities (or at least the desire to). Students with experience with wikis or Wikimedia projects are preferred.
  • The ability to flourish in a highly transparent and collaborative environment and work on a team with diverse demographic and cultural characteristics. Multilingual students (especially German, French, and/or Italian) are a plus!
  • Excellent writing skills that can be adapted to communicate complex legal concepts to a large audience with varying (or no) backgrounds in law.  Students with experience and/or coursework in drafting agreements and/or policies are preferred.
  • Completed coursework in some or all of the following areas of law: internet law, freedom of speech (domestic and international), intellectual property, contract drafting, international law, privacy, data security, and/or licensing.  While coursework in these areas is not required, students who have experience in these areas are heavily preferred.

Pluses

  • Being a Wikimedian! (Please share your username in your cover letter.)

The Wikimedia Foundation is…

….the nonprofit organization that hosts and 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, free of interference.

The Wikimedia Foundation is a charitable, not-for-profit organization that relies on donations. We receive financial support from millions of individuals around the world, with an average donation of about $15. We also receive donations through institutional grants and gifts.

We host 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.

Wikimedia is the world’s fifth most popular digital platform, used in everything from secondary education to advanced computational research. Each month, around a billion people visit the Wikimedia sites, to learn about topics ranging from classical music to Bollywood stars to quantum mechanics.

While Wikipedia is the largest and best-known of the Wikimedia projects, it is only one part of our work. Other widely-used projects include Wikimedia Commons, which contains more than 40 million free media files, and Wikidata, an open structured and linked data repository with nearly 50 million items. We are also the primary developer of MediaWiki, a free and open source collaborative software platform. Wikimedia is:

  • Around 300 languages;
  • Written by 250,000 monthly contributors;
  • Visited around 6,000 times each second;
  • By roughly 1.5 billion devices every month.

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

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