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OpenAI employees revolt after board names new CEO and Altman heads to Microsoft

A melting OpenAI logo

Enlarge (credit: Benj Edwards)

After two days of roller-coaster negotiations at OpenAI HQ due to the surprise ouster of CEO Sam Altman, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella has announced that Microsoft plans to hire Altman and former OpenAI President Greg Brockman to head a “new advanced AI research team.” Overnight, the OpenAI board named a new interim CEO, Emmett Shear, who acknowledged the messy process and promised to hire an investigator to generate a full report on Altman’s firing.

But the story isn’t over yet, because Monday morning, 650 of 770 OpenAI employees sent a letter to the OpenAI board demanding that all current board members resign and Altman and Brockman be reinstated, or they will likely leave to join Altman and Brockman at Microsoft. (Apparently the number of signatories to the letter is still growing.)

“The process through which you terminated Sam Altman and removed Greg Brockman from the board has jeopardized all of this work and undermined our mission and company,” the letter states. “Your conduct has made it clear you did not have the competence to oversee OpenAI.”

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