Slash Boxes

SoylentNews is people

SoylentNews is powered by your submissions, so send in your scoop. Only 12 submissions in the queue.
posted by martyb on Sunday November 19, @08:47AM   Printer-friendly
from the now-who's-the-boss? dept.

OpenAI President Greg Brockman quits as shocked employees hold all-hands meeting

On Friday afternoon, not long after news of CEO Sam Altman's abrupt and surprising departure from OpenAI began spreading online, the company held an all-hands meeting at its headquarters in San Francisco, reports The Information. During the meeting, interim CEO Mira Murati attempted to reassure the shocked employees that the search for a new CEO is underway.

Hours later, OpenAI co-founder and president Greg Brockman posted a statement on X, saying that after he learned today's news he sent a message to the OpenAI team: "based on todays news, i quit." Brockman, a key technical figure involved in many of the company's successes, was relieved of his OpenAI board membership on Friday, but the company initially announced he would be staying on.

Earlier on Friday, OpenAI released a blog post titled "OpenAI announces leadership transition" where it announced that Atlman "was not consistently candid in his communications with the board, hindering its ability to exercise its responsibilities." In a response post on X, Altman wrote, "I loved my time at openai," and hinted at future plans without revealing any details.

OpenAI co-founder and head of research Ilya Sutskever may have led the "coup". Other board members involved in the removal include Adam D'Angelo (Quora CEO), Tasha McCauley (RAND Corporation), and Helen Toner (Georgetown's Center for Security and Emerging Technology).

See also:

WTF is going on at OpenAI? We have theories
Why Was Sam Altman Fired As CEO of OpenAI?
Everything We Know About OpenAI's Shocking Ouster of Sam Altman

On the other hand . . .

OpenAI board attempts to hit "Ctrl-Z" in talks with Altman to return as CEO

Just over a day since his surprise firing that sent shock waves through the tech industry, the OpenAI board is reportedly engaging in discussions with Sam Altman to potentially return as CEO of the company, according to The Verge, citing people familiar with the matter. The outlet says that Altman is "ambivalent" about returning and would want significant changes to how the company is run.

The move would be a dramatic about-face for the board, which has faced intense scrutiny from all corners of the tech world for abruptly and surprisingly firing one of the tech industry's most high-profile CEOs. Altman was popular with both Microsoft leadership and OpenAI staff, and his firing came as a shock to employees, who reportedly pushed back against OpenAI Chief Scientist Ilya Sutskever's handling of the move during an all-hands meeting on Friday. The overtures toward Altman suggest that the board may have been surprised by the sizable reaction from the world at large.

[...] If Altman were to return to OpenAI, we do not yet know what that would mean for Sutskever's position at the company, or if others like Brockman and the three senior OpenAI researchers who also resigned would return with Altman as well.

"The best case for the board is that Sam and Greg come back, the 4 board members resign, and lay low for a long while," speculated venture capitalist Will Hubbard on X. "The worst case for the board is that Sam and Greg start another company, take all OpenAI's talent and future funding, and have a lawsuit brought against them." No plans for a lawsuit have been announced.

Original Submission

This discussion was created by martyb (76) for logged-in users only. Log in and try again!
Display Options Threshold/Breakthrough Mark All as Read Mark All as Unread
The Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not responsible for them in any way.
  • (Score: 2) by looorg on Monday November 20, @05:31PM (1 child)

    by looorg (578) on Monday November 20, @05:31PM (#1333632)

    Considering that Microsoft appears to be one of the largest investors in OpenAI I'm surprise they just don't acquire them at this point. Or what is left. Or perhaps that is the plan. Take the senior staff (done!), and some of those 500 people that now demand to quit, or at least on paper. Since Altman is clearly not coming back then if he and Brockman signed with Microsoft to head up some new fantastic AI research division that MS just created out of the blue to cater to them. They'll need staff, good thing then there are about 500 people available that know what to do. The remaining husk will then be purchased for knowledge, pattern etc and the entire 100 million dollar investment MS is written off as a lost investment.

    Starting Score:    1  point
    Karma-Bonus Modifier   +1  

    Total Score:   2  
  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by takyon on Tuesday November 21, @01:28AM

    by takyon (881) <{takyon} {at} {}> on Tuesday November 21, @01:28AM (#1333675) Journal

    OpenAI closes $300M share sale at $27B-29B valuation []
    OpenAI in talks to sell shares at $86 billion valuation - Bloomberg News []

    This seems like it's going to be a lot cheaper for Microsoft than an outright acquisition would have been, and "OpenAI"* had a weird corporate under nonprofit structure.

    It's not as though Microsoft gutted "OpenAI" for free and it will become irrelevant overnight. But the groundwork has been laid for Microsoft to screw them over, and maybe even stop paying the Nvidia tax [].

    This crazy saga is going to be retold in business textbooks and probably a Hollywood movie.

    *"Open" in name only.

    [SIG] 10/28/2017: Soylent Upgrade v14 []