ChatGPT-Maker Open AI Pushes Out Co-Founder and CEO Sam Altman, Says He Wasn’t “Consistently Candid”
“The board no longer has confidence in his ability to continue leading OpenAI,” the company said.
The board of ChatGPT-maker Open AI said Friday it has pushed out its co-founder and CEO Sam Altman after a review found he was “not consistently candid in his communications” with the board.
“The board no longer has confidence in his ability to continue leading OpenAI,” the company said in a statement.
Mira Murati, OpenAI’s chief technology officer, will take over as interim CEO effective immediately, the company said, while it searches for a permanent replacement.
An OpenAI spokesperson did not immediately respond to a request for comment on what Altman's alleged lack of candor was about. The statement said his behavior was hindering the board's ability to exercise its responsibilities.
Altman helped start OpenAI as a nonprofit research laboratory in 2015.
In the past year, he was thrust into the global spotlight as the face of OpenAI after ChatGPT exploded into public consciousness. On a world tour earlier this year, he was mobbed by a crowd of adoring fans at an event in London.
Just Thursday, he took part in a CEO summit at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation conference in San Francisco, where OpenAI is based.
He predicted AI will prove to be “the greatest leap forward of any of the big technological revolutions we’ve had so far.” But he also acknowledged the need for guardrails to protect humanity from the existential threat posed by the quantum leaps being taking by computers.
“I really think the world is going to rise to the occasion and everybody wants to do the right thing,” Altman said.
As part of the transition announced Friday, OpenAI's president and board chairman, Greg Brockman, will be stepping down as chairman of the board but will remain in his role at the company, reporting to the CEO. The statement gave no explanation for that change.
The company said its board consists of OpenAI's chief scientist, Ilya Sutskever, and three non-employees: Quora CEO Adam D’Angelo, tech entrepreneur Tasha McCauley, and Helen Toner of the Georgetown Center for Security and Emerging Technology.
OpenAI’s key business partner, Microsoft, which has invested billions of dollars into the startup and helped provide the computing power to run its AI systems, said Friday that the transition won’t affect its relationship.
“We have a long-term partnership with OpenAI and Microsoft remains committed to Mira and their team as we bring this next era of AI to our customers,” said an emailed Microsoft statement.
The Associated Press and OpenAI have a licensing and technology agreement that allows OpenAI access to part of AP’s text archives.
By MATT O'BRIEN