Ex-board member of OpenAI reveals CEO's dismissal due to alleged "psychological abuse".


Recently, in a program, former OpenAI board member Helen Toner revealed the inside story about the sudden dismissal of the CEO last November.

Helen Toner, a former board member of OpenAI, stated in an interview on the "TED AI Show" podcast aired on Tuesday that they learned about ChatGPT's existence through Twitter.

Toner detailed for the first time the behind-the-scenes story of the sudden dismissal and rehiring of former OpenAI CEO Sam Altman in November last year, portraying a manipulative executive who fostered a "toxic environment."

She said that one catalyst for Altman's dismissal was two OpenAI executives reporting "psychological abuse" to the board.

"They were very serious about it and actually sent us some screenshots and documentation of some instances..." she said.

Altman did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

When asked for a comment, OpenAI referenced a statement from current board chairman Brett Taylor provided to the "TED AI Show" podcast, stating that the events of last November had been reviewed.

"We are disappointed that Ms. Toner continues to bring up these issues... The conclusion of the review was that the former board's decision was not based on concerns about product safety or security, development speed, OpenAI's financial condition, or its statements to investors, customers, or business partners."

Four days after being dismissed, Altman made a triumphant return after nearly all of OpenAI's 700 employees threatened to leave unless the board stepped down and reinstated his position.

In the podcast, Toner attributed Altman’s swift return to employees being told that the company would collapse without him. Additionally, once Altman's potential return seemed likely, employees feared retaliation if they did not support him.

Supported by Microsoft, OpenAI launched the highly popular ChatGPT chatbot in 2022, sparking a generative AI craze.



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