Changes in OpenAI Leadership
Sam Altman, the former CEO of OpenAI, will not be returning to the company, as confirmed by Ilya Sutskever, the chief scientist of OpenAI. Despite efforts from the company's employees, recent negotiations have not led to Altman's return. The new interim CEO is Emmett Shear, co-founder of Twitch, succeeding Mira Murati.
Board Decision and Company Vision
Sutskever informed the staff that three board members, who played a role in Altman's removal, are standing by their decision. They believe this decision is essential to defend the company's vision. According to Sutskever, Altman's conduct and interactions with the board compromised their ability to oversee the development of AGI (Artificial General Intelligence) and transform the company into a profit-driven entity.
Crisis and Resignations
The removal of Altman from the board, followed by the expulsion of President Greg Brockman, triggered a crisis. Brockman resigned, and three senior researchers also left, potentially leading to a broader exodus to other organizations, including Google. Simultaneously, Altman seems to be moving towards a new venture after his dismissal.
OpenAI stated that Altman's removal followed a deliberative review process by the board. The board found that Altman was not consistently "candid" in his communications, hindering its ability to fulfill its responsibilities. The board expressed a lack of confidence in Altman's ability to lead OpenAI.
OpenAI Team's Support
In contrast, the OpenAI team has expressed solidarity with Altman, urging the board to reconsider his appointment as CEO. Altman had previously acknowledged the possibility of being fired, emphasizing the importance of democratizing the board over time to include all of humanity.
Altman, in an earlier interview with Bloomberg, acknowledged the potential for being fired and emphasized the need for technology governance to belong to humanity as a whole. He stressed the importance of questioning those in power, stating that trust should not rest solely on one company or individual.
In summary, OpenAI is undergoing a significant leadership change, with Sam Altman not returning as CEO and Emmett Shear taking on the role in the interim. The decision has sparked internal and external discussions about the company's vision and governance.