This is the point I was working on. I also have no confident answer to this 
problem, but have a gut feel it is somewhere in between the extremes. There is 
also the point that most people have some choice in where they live, though I 
do not have any useful suggestion of how that should be factored into the 
calculation. San Francisco does seem to be a rather expensively arbitrary 
choice of address, which may be influencing the way the foundation operates. 

-----Original Message-----
From: Wikimedia-l [] On Behalf Of 
Dan Garry (Deskana)
Sent: 12 September 2020 18:38
To: Wikimedia Mailing List
Subject: Re: [Wikimedia-l] Foundation and affiliates disclosing salaries on job 
ads & the effect of this on workplace equity

On Fri, 11 Sep 2020 at 12:39, Nathan <> wrote:

> Shouldn't two candidates for the same position for the same company get
> roughly the same salary, regardless of where they live?

I don't know. Maybe.

Within the US, there are markets where decent, experienced software
engineers earn half of what a software engineer in San Francisco would
earn, and they would also probably have a comparable quality of life.
Outside the US, there are markets out there where the going rate
for decent, experienced software engineers is 15 times less than the going
rate for a software engineer in San Francisco. Due to the relative decrease
in purchasing power, the salary that's 15 times lower gives these people a
good quality of life comparable to (or possibly even better than) life in
San Francisco. Is it exploiting them to pay them 15 times less given that
their quality of life is the same, or even higher, than people in San
Francisco? Would it be fair to people in San Francisco, or other locations,
to do this? Should the Wikimedia Foundation pay people in this market 15
times more than they would earn at another company? As Gergő said, would
that be a responsible use of donor funds?

I don't have the answer to these questions. They are very hard questions
where there is no obviously correct answer.

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