OpenAI board ousts high-profile CEO Sam Altman

OpenAI said in a statement that high-profile OpenAI CEO Sam Altman, who has become the face of the technology industry’s artificial intelligence craze, has been driven out of the company by the board of directors. Blog article Friday afternoon.

The move triggers a shakeup at OpenAI, a pioneering artificial intelligence company and maker of the popular chatbot ChatGPT. Mira Murati, former OpenAI chief technology officer, has been named interim CEO, the company said. Hours later, the company’s chief executive, Greg Brockman, was named interim chief executive. The president said he was resigning.

“Mr. Altman’s departure follows a thoughtful review process by the Board, which concluded that he was consistently dishonest in his communications with the Board and hindered the Board’s ability to discharge its responsibilities,” the company said. “He is capable.” Continue to lead OpenAI. “

The departure from OpenAI is a shocking fall for Mr. Altman, 38, who has emerged over the past year as one of the tech industry’s most prominent executives and one of its most fascinating figures. Last fall, OpenAI released an artificial intelligence product, triggering an industry-wide artificial intelligence craze. Chat GPT.

It was unclear what decision the board made in its statement. Mr. Altman could not immediately be reached for comment. “I loved my time at openai. It was transformative for me personally and hopefully a little bit for the world,” he wrote in a post on Brilliant people working together. I’ll talk more about what’s next later.”

Mr. Brockman said in a post to X on Friday night that he and Mr. Altman had not received any warning of the board’s decision. “Sam and I are shocked and saddened by what the board did today,” he wrote. “We’re still trying to figure out what happened.”

Brockman said Altman was asked to participate in a video conference with the board at noon on Friday, but he was immediately fired. Brockman said he is not a member of the board, although he is its chairman. Meeting.

Minutes later, he said, the board notified him of Mr. Altman’s dismissal. Around the same time, the board published a blog post.

A veteran technology entrepreneur, Mr. Altman helped found OpenAI in 2015 with financial backing from Elon Musk. He has led the small San Francisco company into rare territory – becoming a technology leader funded by billions of dollars from Microsoft and the envy of Silicon Valley giants such as Google. and Facebook parent company Meta.

Mr. Altman also became a contributor to the tech industry’s transition toward artificial intelligence, testifying before Congress and engaging lawmakers and regulators around the world. Many in the industry consider artificial intelligence to be the biggest technological shift in generations, and no one has done more to generate mainstream adoption. Even more passionate about it than Mr. Ultraman.

Altman appeared Thursday night at an event in Oakland, Calif., where he discussed the future of art and artists as artificial intelligence can generate images, videos, sounds and other forms of art on its own. As he approaches his departure from OpenAI, he has repeatedly said that he and the company will continue to work with artists to help ensure their futures are bright.

Earlier in the day, he attended the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation CEO Summit in San Francisco along with Laurene Powell Jobs, founder and president of Emerson Group, and executives from Meta and Google.

Brockman, who helped found OpenAI with Altman, said in a post on X that he would resign. The company said earlier in the day that he would step down as chairman of the board but would remain president and report to the CEO.

Reached by phone, Mr. Brockman declined to comment. He has been instrumental in shaping OpenAI’s mission and day-to-day operations from its inception.

When OpenAI released ChatGPT last November, the chatbot attracted hundreds of millions of users, wowing people with the way it answered questions, wrote poetry, and discussed almost any topic.

Following the success of chatbots, the broader tech industry embraced so-called generative artificial intelligence, or technology that can generate text, images and other media on its own. These technologies, the result of more than a decade of internal research at companies like OpenAI and Google, are poised to reinvent everything from email programs to web search engines to digital tutors.

Open artificial intelligence in talks The new funding round would value the company at more than $80 billion — nearly three times its valuation less than a year ago — and it’s unclear what Altman’s departure will mean for those talks.

But his ouster is a blow to Microsoft, which has invested $13 billion in OpenAI and owns 49% of the company. Microsoft Chief Executive Satya Nadella this year launched an expansion plan to use technology developed by OpenAI in nearly all Microsoft products, from the Bing search engine to widely used business software. Mr. Altman joined him at a news conference announcing the plans.

Microsoft said Friday afternoon that it plans to continue working closely with OpenAI.Nadella said in a statement statement The company’s long-term agreement with OpenAI gives Microsoft “full access to everything we need to deliver on our innovation agenda and exciting product roadmap.” He added that the company remains committed to “our partnership and to Mira and the team.” ”.

Microsoft shares fell more than 1% in the last 30 minutes of trading after Altman announced his departure.

In a message to OpenAI employees seen by The New York Times, Ms. Mulati said she had spoken with Mr. Nadella and Microsoft Chief Technology Officer Kevin Scott on Friday and that they remained Support OpenAI.

“We are now at a critical juncture where our tools are being widely adopted, developers are actively building on our platforms, and policymakers are considering the best ways to regulate these systems,” she wrote. “We are working harder than ever before. We are always more focused, proactive and true to our core values.”

OpenAI’s four board members are made up of respected AI researchers, technology executives and AI policy experts, including the company’s chief scientist and co-founder Ilya Sutskever and Quora CEO Adam D’Angelo. Board members could not immediately be reached for comment.

Current and former OpenAI employees were shocked to hear the news. As recently as Friday morning, they were discussing Mr. Altman as if he had a long-term future with the company. Researchers, entrepreneurs and investors outside the company were equally shocked. Surprised, many people rushed to pay attention. Identify the reasons why the OpenAI Board of Directors made this decision.

One of Mr. Altman’s brothers, Jack Altman, CEO of business software startup Lattice, defended his brother on X.

“More important than being one of the smartest and most influential people our industry has ever seen,” he wrote, “Sam is one of the most generous and caring people I know. I have never met I’ve never met anyone more supportive and inspiring than him.” Everyone around him was worse than him. Impossible to be a proud brother. “

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