Over 700 OpenAI staff threaten to leave following Sam Altman’s shock exit

OpenAI logo on GPT-4 illustration by OpenAIOpenAI

In another remarkable development from OpenAI, over 700 members of its 770 total staff are threatening to quit if Sam Altman is not reinstated as CEO.

The world of generative AI has been in uproar since the shock departure of Sam Altman and Greg Brockman from ChatGPT creators OpenAI. Now the method behind their ouster is under fire from several staff, who have signed an open letter obtained by pundit Kara Swisher, which detailing OpenAI’s employees intention to quit if Brockman and Altman are not reinstated.

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“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 reads. “Your conduct has made it clear you did not have the competence to oversee OpenAI.”

The letter is signed by over 700 members of its 770 total staff and goes on to express concerns about the future stability of the company and accuses the board of OpenAI of negotiating in bad faith.

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OpenAI staff threaten to join Microsoft

This latest development follows not only the controversial firing of Altman and Brockman, but also the installation of former Twitch CEO Emmett Shear as interim CEO of OpenAI and the announcement that Microsoft had hired Altman and Brockman to head up a new advanced AI research unit within Microsoft.

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The OpenAI staff who co-signed the open letter went on to confirm that they intended to jump ship and join Altman and Brockman at Microsoft, where apparently positions are available for OpenAI employees who wish to join.

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To the surprise of many industry analysts, one of the co-signers of the document was OpenAI CTO Ilya Sutskever, who has received criticism for his part in what has been viewed as a boardroom coup against Altman and Brockman. Shortly before the release of the open letter, Sutskever posted on Twitter/X, saying: “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.”

90% of OpenAI’s staff are threatening to leave

According to one of OpenAI’s employees on Twitter, the total has grown from the initial 505 as originally reported to over 700 of the companys 770 total staff.

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While it seems unlikely that Altman and Brockman will return to OpenAI at this stage, what the outcome of this situation will be is unknown, but we will continue to provide further updates as we get them.