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Selling to Wikimedia Foundation

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A note to Information Technology Vendors

Thank you for your interest in the Wikimedia Foundation.

We are frequently approached by vendors hoping for some of our time to discuss why we should purchase a product/service/software/solution from that company.

If you are interested in selling to Wikimedia, please start by reading the "Get involved" page maintained by our operations team.  Understand, however, that the Wikimedia Foundation is very strongly biased toward free software, so before trying to making an aggressive sales pitch, please read the Wikimedia Foundation Guiding Principles published by the Wikimedia Foundation Board of Trustees.

At Wikimedia Foundation, we pride ourselves with our level of accessibility to skilled technical collaborators. Many vendors make it clear that they fail to understand our values and way of working, and attempt manipulative and/or pushy techniques to reach us. Your best strategy in reaching us is going to be by demonstrating the depth of your understanding of our values and preferred way of working. As such, any closed source solutions are largely frowned upon, and would only be used if there was no viable open source alternative. So far, the only place we have found we cannot use open source software effectively is within a servers BIOS/firmware and within our network routing/switching platform. All of our other operational services and projects are open source.

Additionally, all of our infrastructure is documented and available via the above links and sub-links from those pages. Any suggestion for software to replace an existing software solution for one of our services should be fully researched and detail how it specifically applies to our infrastructure. Unfortunately, we cannot entertain every offer to converse about every potential solution, as we get dozens of these offers weekly.

When we launch a search for a vendor solution, we often announce it on our blog at https://wikimediafoundation.org/news/. Please follow it for these announcements, as the announcements will frequently provide detailed instructions about how to effectively present your product.

Like the vast majority of people using email, each employee at Wikimedia Foundation frequently receives a lot of unsolicited email. Even only two emails from your organization is enough for many of us to mentally flag you as a "spammer". As such, you should avoid placing any of our email addresses on your promotional/mailing/sales/contact lists.

Advice for Wikimedia Foundation employees

You may receive frequent contact from salespeople for technology vendors, hoping for a "bit of your time" and pressuring you to connect them to "the right person" at our organization. Be strong! These people are frequently paid by commission, and will frequently get more aggressive and/or desperate when it appears as though they will miss their sales targets for their company's fiscal quarter. Their problem is not your problem. We have a brief email (see Selling to Wikimedia Foundation/Pointer) which you are free to use in response to the vendor in question.