OpenAI’s top executive Sam Altman, who has become the face of the tech industry’s artificial intelligence development, has been ousted from the company by its board of directors, OpenAI said in a statement. Blog Friday afternoon.
The move prompted a reshuffle at OpenAI, an innovative AI company and maker of the popular chatbot ChatGPT. Meera Murati, previously OpenAI’s chief technology officer, has been named interim chief executive officer, the company said. Hours later, the company’s president, Greg Brockman, said he was stepping down.
“Mr. Altman’s departure follows the board’s advisory review process, which concluded that he had been consistently dishonest in his communications with the board, impeding his ability to carry out its responsibilities,” the company said. “The board has no confidence in his ability to continue to lead OpenAI.”
Leaving OpenAI marks the departure of the 38-year-old Mr. Last fall, OpenAI launched AI frenzy across the industry when it released ChatGPT.
It was not immediately clear what decision was made beyond the board’s report. Comment Mr. Altman could not immediately be reached. In a post to X, earlier on Twitter, he wrote: “I loved my time at the Open. It was transformative for me personally, and the world just a little bit smaller. Above all, I loved working with such talented people. I will tell you about the next one later.
X In a post on Friday evening, Mr. Brockman himself and Mr. Altman also said he had no warning of the board’s decision. “Sam and I are shocked and saddened by what the board has done today,” he wrote. “We’re also still trying to figure out exactly what happened.”
Mr. Altman was asked to join a video meeting with the group at noon on Friday and was promptly fired, Mr. Brockman says. Mr. Although Brockman is chairman of the board, he said he did not participate in the board meeting.
A few minutes later Mr. He said the board informed him of Altman’s ouster. At the same time, the board published a blog post.
A long-time technology entrepreneur, Mr. Altman helped found OpenAI in 2015 with funding from Elon Musk. The small San Francisco company has moved into rarefied territory — billions of dollars in funding from Microsoft and a tech leader envied by Silicon Valley giants like Google and Facebook’s parent company Meta.
Mr. Altman also became a spokesperson for the tech industry’s shift toward AI, testifying before Congress and fascinating lawmakers and regulators around the world. Many in the industry believe that AI is the biggest technological change in generations, and no one is more passionate about it than Mr. Altman.
On Thursday evening, Mr. Altman appeared at an event in Oakland, California, where he discussed the future of art and artists, now that artificial intelligence can create images, videos, sounds and other art forms. Without giving any hint that he was leaving OpenAI, he repeatedly said that he and the company would continue to work with artists to help ensure their future is bright.
Earlier, he attended the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation CEO Summit in San Francisco along with Emerson Collective founder and chairman Lauren Powell Jobs and executives from Meta and Google.
Mr. Mr. Altman, who helped co-found OpenAI. Brockman said he was quitting in a post on X. The company previously said he would step down as chairman of the board but remain as chairman and report to the chief executive.
Contacted by phone, Mr. Brockman declined to comment. Since the early days of OpenAI, he has been instrumental in shaping both its mission and its day-to-day operations.
When OpenAI released ChatGPT last November, the chatbot attracted hundreds of millions of users, mesmerizing people with the way it answered questions, wrote poems, and just about any topic thrown its way.
After the chatbot’s success, the broader tech industry embraced so-called generative artificial intelligence — technologies that can generate text, images, and other media on their own. The result of more than a decade of research within companies like OpenAI and Google, these technologies are poised to remake everything from email programs to web search engines and digital trainers.
OpenAI is in talks to close a new round of financing that would value the company at more than $80 billion — nearly tripling its valuation from a year ago — and Mr. It’s unclear what Altman’s departure means.
But his dismissal is a blow to Microsoft, which has invested $13 billion in OpenAI and owns a 49 percent stake in the company. Satya Nadella, Microsoft’s chief executive, this year unveiled a sweeping plan to use the technology developed in OpenAI across all of Microsoft’s products, from the Bing search engine to its widely used business software. To announce the plans Mr. Altman joined him at a press event.
Microsoft said Friday afternoon that it plans to continue working closely with OpenAI. Mr. Nadella A Report The company’s long-term agreement with OpenAI gave Microsoft “full access to everything we have to offer on our innovation agenda and an exciting product roadmap.” He said the company remains committed to “our partnership and Meera and the team.”
Mr. Microsoft’s stock price fell more than 1 percent in the last 30 minutes of trading after Altman’s departure was announced.
In a message to OpenAI employees interviewed by The New York Times, Mr. Ms Muratti said she had spoken with Nadella and Microsoft’s chief technology officer Kevin Scott on Friday, and they were supportive of OpenAI.
“We are now at a critical point where our tools are widely adopted, developers are actively building on our platforms and policymakers are debating the best ways to regulate these systems,” he wrote. “It’s more important than ever that we stay focused, motivated and true to our core values.”
OpenAI’s four-member Board of Directors is a mix of respected AI researchers, technology executives and AI policy experts, including the company’s Chief Scientist and Co-Founder Ilya Sutskever and Q&A Chief Executive Adam D’Angelo. The site is Quora. Board members could not immediately be reached for comment.
Current and former OpenAI employees were shocked by the news. On a recent Friday morning, Mr. They were discussing Altman. Researchers, entrepreneurs and investors outside the organization were equally surprised, with many scrambling to determine why the OpenAI board made its decision.
Jack Altman, Mr. One of Altman’s younger brothers, Jack Altman, chief executive of business software start-up Lattice, defended his sibling at X.
“More than just being one of the most intelligent and influential people our industry has ever had,” he wrote, “Sam is one of the most generous and caring people I know. I’ve never met someone who has supported and uplifted more people than him. Couldn’t be a prouder brother.”