New OpenAI CEO investigating Sam Altman firing 

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The new CEO of OpenAI, who took the interim job days after the tumultuous firing of Sam Altman, said Monday he will launch an investigation into the process that led to the ousting in his first 30 days.  

Emmett Shear, the former CEO of Twitch, will be taking over as the top executive at the influential artificial intelligence (AI) company that launched the ChatGPT tool to the public last year, he said in a Monday post.  

Part of his three-point plan for the next 30 days includes hiring an “independent investigator to dig into the entire process leading up to this point and generate a full report,” according to Shear’s post on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter. 

“I have spent today drinking from the firehose as much as possible, speaking with the board, a small number of major partners, and listening to employees,” Shear wrote.  

“OpenAI employees are extremely impressive, as you might have guessed, and mission-driven in the extreme. And it’s clear that the process and communications around Sam’s removal has been handled very badly, which has seriously damaged our trust,” he added.  

Altman’s firing Friday was announced in a statement by the company’s board of directors, which said a review found Altman was “not consistently candid in his communications with the board.”

“OpenAI was deliberately structured to advance our mission: to ensure that artificial general intelligence benefits all humanity,” the board of directors said in statement. “The board remains fully committed to serving this mission.” 

The decision has led 490 OpenAI employees to threaten to leave unless the board members resign and bring Altman back on as CEO, and Greg Brockman, whose leave from the company was also announced Friday, back as president, Wired reported.  

The employees signed a letter saying 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,” Wired reported.  

The letter reportedly includes a signature from the company’s chief scientist and member of the board Ilya Sutskever.  

Sutskever posted on X on Monday, “I deeply regret my participation in the board’s actions.”  

“I never intended to harm OpenAI. I love everything we’ve built together and I will do everything I can to reunite the company,” he added.  

Microsoft announced Monday it was hiring Altman to help lead a “new advanced AI research team,” Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella posted on X.  Brockman will also join Microsoft to lead that team.

Microsoft has invested billions of dollars into OpenAI, and the company has incorporated the ChatGPT tools into its own Microsoft products.  

“We look forward to moving quickly to provide them with the resources needed for their success Nadella said of the former OpenAI executives.

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