UPDATE: Nov. 17, 2023, 4:59 p.m. EST Altman speaks out about his firing from OpenAI on X.
Sam Altman has been fired from his position as OpenAI’s CEO.
On Friday, the board of directors announced the decision on the OpenAI website. CTO Mira Murati will step in as interim CEO while the board finds a permanent successor.
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Why did Sam Altman get fired?
The board’s decision came after a “deliberative review process” which found that Altman was “not consistently candid in his communications with the board, hindering its ability to exercise its responsibilities.” Specifics of Altman’s alleged nebulousness are not clear.
Altman has overseen ChatGPT’s meteoric success; it’s one of the fastest growing platforms of all time and a pioneer in consumer-facing generative AI. In his capacity as CEO, Altman testified before Congress, calling for the regulation of AI. At the time, however, some perceived the move to be a self-serving strategy to advance OpenAI’s agenda.
Last week, ChatGPT experienced a major outage that shut down the platform for several hours. Altman initially said this was due to increased demand following the deployment of new features. However, OpenAI later reported the outage was due to a DDoS attack.
The board, which oversees OpenAI (a 501(c)(3) nonprofit), consists of OpenAI’s chief scientist Ilya Sutskever, as well as Quora CEO Adam D’Angelo, technology entrepreneur Tasha McCauley, and Georgetown Center for Security and Emerging Technology’s Helen Toner.
Greg Brockman, co-founder and president of OpenAI, will be stepping down as chairman of the board “as part of this transition,” the announcement said.
OpenAI’s former CEO opens up about firing
On Friday, Altman posted a statement on X reflecting on his tenure as OpenAI’s CEO.
“I loved my time at OpenAI. It was transformative for me personally, and hopefully the world a little bit. Most of all I loved working with such talented people.”
Altman added that he will have more to say about what’s next for him at a later time.
This story is developing…