February 26, 2024

Fears over OpenAI’s aggressive approach to AI development have led to a split among top leaders. Founder Ilya Sutskever and other board members expressed concern about the potential risks and threats to humanity posed by AI, leading to the dismissal of CEO Sam Altman. Altman was known for aggressively pursuing funding and rapid AI innovation, including a $1 billion funding request from Softbank for AI technology. The company’s commitment to the effective altruism movement, which prioritizes AI safety, may have contributed to Altman’s ouster. This is not the first time disagreements about AI safety have led to departures from the company, with several former employees founding a rival company focused on building safer AI. The fallout from Altman’s dismissal has been significant, with multiple executives quitting in protest and employees calling for his return. OpenAI’s board has provided little detail about the reasons behind Altman’s dismissal, aside from losing confidence in him and questioning his candor in communications. The schism within the company highlights the ongoing debate and concern over the potential dangers of rapidly advancing AI technology.

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