OpenAI Chronicles: Altman Returns as CEO, Microsoft Joins Board as Non-Voting Observer

Altman's back, Microsoft on board as silent partner!

Highlights
  • After many twists and turns, Sam Altman is finally back as OpenAI’s CEO.
  • He has announced the formation of a new oversight board, chaired by Bret Taylor and including Larry Summers and Adam D’Angelo.
  • The revamped board, under Taylor’s leadership, is gearing up for an independent investigation into the tumultuous events.
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The rollercoaster ride at OpenAI appears to have reached its conclusion. Sam Altman is officially back as CEO, and Microsoft is joining the board in a distinctive non-voting role. However, if you need a clear idea of what happened in the last couple of weeks and what the entire buzz was about, you’ve landed in the right place. In this story, we’ll recap the entire OpenAI incident and the current situation.

What Happened At OnenAI?

The saga began on November 17 when Altman and Brockman were ousted from the board without clear reasons, citing Altman’s alleged lack of transparency. The tech community rallied behind Altman, major investors advocated for his reinstatement, and even Microsoft extended job offers to the ousted duo.

The turmoil escalated as OpenAI’s staff threatened mass resignations unless Altman was reinstated. Initially appointing CTO Mira Murati as interim CEO, OpenAI later pivoted to Twitch co-founder Emmett Shear. Subsequent negotiations resulted in a revamped board, leaving only one member in place, and Altman was back at the helm.

Altman Introduces a Revamped Board

As soon as Altman was back at OpenAI, he announced the formation of a new oversight board, chaired by Bret Taylor and including Larry Summers and Adam D’Angelo. Interestingly, Microsoft’s involvement takes a novel turn as a non-voting observer, a move highlighting the collaboration between the tech giants.

Addressing concerns about potential conflicts, Altman clarified Quora CEO Adam D’Angelo’s continued presence on the board. Altman, or his legal representative, asserted that D’Angelo had been transparent about any conflicts, even offering to step down if necessary.

What Will Happen Now?

As Altman resumes the CEO mantle, under Taylor’s leadership, the revamped board is gearing up for an independent investigation into the tumultuous events. Altman expressed a commitment to learning from the experience and a dedication to OpenAI’s mission, thanking those who contributed to the organization’s resilience.