• Ben's Bites
  • Posts
  • Sam Altman not-guilty, new board members join OpenAI.

Sam Altman not-guilty, new board members join OpenAI.

The whole mess with OpenAI's leadership is finally getting sorted. They did an internal investigation and the results are out. OpenAI’s board had legit concerns but firing Sam (that too, suddenly) was a bit of an overreaction. Sam is back at the OpenAI board with three new members.

What’s going on here?

OpenAI finished its internal investigation of November 2023 events.

What does that mean?

OpenAI hired a fancy law firm called WilmerHale to dig into what went down. Quick rewind: the board at the time kicked Sam off the board and straight-up fired him as CEO. Cue employee freakout, some backroom deals, and a few days later Sam's back as CEO, but not on the board (and some of the old board members are out).

The whole reason for the drama was that Sam and the board weren't seeing eye-to-eye. The investigation basically confirmed the same but also made it clear it wasn't about messed-up products or money problems. Sam even admitted he could've handled a certain situation (whatever that was) way better.

Now, Sam is back on the OpenAI board with three new members: Dr. Sue Desmond-Hellmann (ex-Gates Foundation CEO), Nicole Seligman (a former top lawyer at Sony), and Fidji Simo (Instacart's CEO). These people know how to run big, complex operations.

The Information on the street is that Ilya Sutskever, OpenAI's Chief Scientist, is sticking around. Sam seems pretty keen on keeping him around too, as “Nothing is changing”, “Ilya is awesome” and “I hope we work together for the rest of our careers.” (via The Verge)

Why should I care?

This shakeup could have derailed OpenAI. CTO Mira Murati also criticised news outlets and previous board members on their attempts to “pit them against themselves”. Now, they're back on track. And everyone’s asking when are we getting the next release? The boss replied: “patience jimmy. it will be worth the wait.’

Join the conversation

or to participate.