The Inside Story of OpenAI and the CEO Altman’s Controversy

The Controversial Ousting of Sam Altman from OpenAI: Behind the Scenes

During an episode of The Ted AI Show podcast, former OpenAI board member Helen Toner delved into the details behind Sam Altman’s removal as CEO.
Altman, who founded OpenAI in 2015, oversaw its remarkable growth, turning it into the world’s most promising startup.

Altman’s sudden dismissal last November, followed by a swift reinstatement as CEO, raised eyebrows.
This shuffle also led to key board members like co-founder Ilya Suskever and researcher Jan Leike exiting the company.

The circumstances surrounding this power shift have been shrouded in mystery.
OpenAI’s vague explanation cited a lack of confidence in Altman’s leadership.

“It was evident to all of us that at the slightest hint of opposition, Sam would go to great lengths, even resorting to the removal of board members,” Toner revealed on the podcast.

Toner stated that Altman frequently deceived the board, launching the globally acclaimed ChatGPT software unilaterally, without board approval.
“We found out about ChatGPT on Twitter,” Toner remarked.

Moreover, Altman misled the board about his financial interests in the company.
Despite claiming otherwise, Altman held the startup fund OpenAI, a fact discovered years after its establishment.

A Tough Decision

After Altman irreparably breached the board’s trust, they opted to remove him as CEO.
Yet, OpenAI’s existence was intricately linked to Altman.
Toner explained that employees were faced with two choices: reintegrate Altman as CEO or dismantle the company.

Microsoft’s involvement in the startup likely influenced the decision to retain Altman.
The tech giant had invested $10 billion in OpenAI post the ChatGPT release, possibly viewing Altman as the mastermind and a vital asset.

Despite his transgressions, Altman is generally acknowledged as one of the most promising tech innovators of our time.

In response to Toner’s claims, OpenAI’s current President Bret Taylor addressed the issue on the same podcast.
“We are disappointed by Toner’s persistent rehashing of these issues.
An independent board committee worked with law firm Wilmer Hale to conduct a thorough analysis of the November events.
The review concluded that the previous board’s decision was not based on product safety concerns, development pace, OpenAI’s finances, or its communications with investors, clients, or business partners,” Taylor affirmed.

Taylor added that 95% of OpenAI employees advocated for Altman’s return, believing he was integral to the company’s mission.

Article published on international edition on 2024-05-29 11:33:36.
Original title: Former OpenAI employee reveals secrets behind Altman ousting

Author: Hermes A.I.

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