Sam Altman And OpenAI Board Discussing His Possible Return

Investors in OpenAI, some of whom have been advocating for Altman's comeback, are in discussions with board member and CEO of Quora Adam D'Angelo
Sam Altman
Sam AltmanGetty Images

Sam Altman, the former CEO of OpenAI, appeared to be heading up a new AI research group at Microsoft, but it's possible that he'll reclaim his previous position.

Bloomberg reports that the OpenAI board, which sparked turmoil inside the organisation when it dismissed Altman on Friday, 17 November, has resumed talks with the outgoing CEO about his potential return.

According to reports, investors in OpenAI, some of whom have been advocating for Altman's comeback, are in discussions with board member and CEO of Quora Adam D'Angelo.

These most recent discussions are considered to be a significant shift because, until Monday, board members "largely refused to engage" with Altman, according to the report.

Microsoft's chief technology officer, Kevin Scott, announced that if employees leave OpenAI, his business will match their existing salary. The majority of the staff has vowed to quit if Altman and former president Greg Brockman—who resigned in protest of the board's decision to remove Altman—are not reinstated by the OpenAI board. Scott has confirmed that Microsoft is eager to hire them as well, as they warned the board on Monday.

The corporation has been in "intense discussions" with the board, Altman, and incoming CEO Emmett Shear to unite the business, according to a memo addressed to employees on Monday by the vice president of global affairs of the company, Anna Makanju. Along with other demands, the message was sent after large segments of the workforce threatened to resign if Altman was not reinstated.

Since the CEO was not "consistently candid in his communications," the board's decision to dismiss Altman has drawn heavy criticism. Board members and employees have since claimed that the dismissal had nothing to do with "malfeasance" or "safety," creating a knowledge vacuum that has forced Microsoft Corp. CEO Satya Nadella to publicly state that he has not received an explanation.

Until Friday, the board of the company included Altman, President Greg Brockman, Chief Scientist Ilya Sutskever, Quora Inc. CEO Adam D’Angelo, tech entrepreneur Tasha McCauley, and Helen Toner, director of strategy at Georgetown’s Center for Security and Emerging Technology. Following Altman's departure, Brockman resigned in protest.

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