While not exactly our normal beat, it’s hard to ignore the biggest tech news of the day: the OpenAI drama which saw CEO Sam Altman abruptly fired from the ChatGPT developer. This happened without notice, and for reasons we can guess but which were not stated.
Update: More than 500 of the company’s 700 staff have threatened to quit unless the board resigns and reinstates Sam Altman and Greg Brockman, with Microsoft saying there are jobs for all of them …
OpenAI drama: Sam Altman’s sudden dismissal
OpenAI announced on Friday that four members of the company’s board had fired Altman – though it was phrased slightly more delicately.
The board of directors of OpenAI, Inc., the 501(c)(3) that acts as the overall governing body for all OpenAI activities, today announced that Sam Altman will depart as CEO and leave the board of directors.
No clear reason was stated, and the wording of the ‘explanation’ was brutal.
Mr. Altman’s departure follows a deliberative review process by the board, which concluded that he was not consistently candid in his communications with the board, hindering its ability to exercise its responsibilities. The board no longer has confidence in his ability to continue leading OpenAI.
That “not consistently candid” part led to speculation about some scandal, but it does not appear that this was the case.
At the same time, OpenAI chair Greg Brockman was stripped of his title, though asked to remain on the board. He was not informed of Altman’s dismissal until after it had happened – and resigned shortly afterwards. Other senior execs did the same.
Jakub Pachocki, the company’s director of research; Aleksander Madry, head of a team evaluating potential risks from AI, and…
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