OpenAI scrambles to prevent staff exodus after Sam Altman ouster

OpenAI scrambles to prevent staff exodus after Sam Altman ouster

OpenAI execs are reportedly having “intense discussions” on how to prevent a staff exodus following the surprise ouster of CEO Sam Altman — who has since accepted a gig at Microsoft.

On Monday, more than 700 of the startup behind ChatGPT’s 770 staff signed a letter threatening to quit if the board doesn’t reinstate Altman. That prompted OpenAI’s vice president of global affairs, Anna Makanju, to deliver an internal memo attempting to rally the company’s workforce, according to Bloomberg, which reviewed the message.

Makanju assured that OpenAI’s management is in touch with Altman, interim CEO Emmett Shear and the board, “but they are not prepared to give us a final response this evening,” she wrote, per Bloomberg.

The extent of OpenAI’s discussions with Altman — or whether they involved giving the 38-year-old AI whiz his job back — remain unclear.

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella (right) said the company was open to hiring more OpenAI staffers, and called for more governance at the ChatGPT maker in light of recent events.
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In another shocking move, OpenAI’s board named former Twitch CEO Emmett Shear as the AI firm’s interim chief.
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Over the weekend, OpenAI’s board named former Twitch boss Shear as the ChatGPT maker’s for-now CEO, capping a dizzying three days of executive shuffling at the artificial intelligence firm that also saw Greg Brockman, Altman’s close ally and the company’s president, jumping ship to Microsoft.

Representatives for OpenAI did not immediately respond to The Post’s request for comment.

OpenAI’s vice president of global affairs, Anna Makanju, delivered an internal memo attempting to rally the company’s workforce, according to Bloomberg, which reviewed the message.
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Altman may not even want his old position back, as he’s already been offered a cozy CEO role leading a new artificial intelligence research team at Microsoft, OpenAI’s largest investor.

In his new position, Altman will still be able to work with OpenAI, which is currently engaged in a $10 billion, “multiyear” partnership with Microsoft. “Satya and my top priority remains to ensure openai continues to thrive,” Altman posted to X on Monday.

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella has echoed the sentiment in his own posts: “We remain committed to our partnership with OpenAI,” he tweeted on Monday — the same day he gave his first interview since Altman’s ouster, which shook Silicon Valley.

Speaking to CNBC, Nadella left the door open for more OpenAI staffers to nab jobs at Microsoft.

Nadella said it’s up to all employees whether they stay in their current roles or accept new positions at Microsoft. “I’m open to both options,” he told CNBC.

No matter where staffers end up, “I think it’s very clear that something has to change around the governance,” Nadella told the outlet.

He added that Microsoft would have “a good dialogue with their [OpenAI’s] board on that.”

The Post has sought comment from Microsoft.

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