OpenAI has a new CEO, and it’s not Sam Altman

OpenAI on website on smartphone stock photo (1)

Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority

TL;DR

  • OpenAI’s Board of Directors has hired former Twitch CEO Emmett Shear as the new CEO of OpenAI, replacing interim CEO Mira Murati, who in turn had replaced ousted CEO Sam Altman.
  • Mira Murati reportedly intended to bring Sam Altman back to OpenAI in some capacity.
  • Reports suggest Microsoft is interested in getting Sam Altman onboard in some capacity, and many OpenAI employees are expected to follow along.

OpenAI, the company behind the wildly successful ChatGPT, has been embroiled in drama since Friday after its Board of Directors fired the then-CEO Sam Altman, reportedly over internal disagreements about AI safety and speed of development. The Board then appointed OpenAI’s Chief Technology Officer, Mira Murati, as the interim CEO. After a weekend of CEO responsibilities, OpenAI’s Board has chosen a new CEO, Emmett Shear, with Sam Altman unlikely to return to the company.

Emmett Shear is best known for being the CEO of Twitch, a post he resigned from in March 2023 after building Twitch up into one of the most popular video streaming platforms. And now, he shall be leading OpenAI, as per a report from Bloomberg. OpenAI’s Board chose Shear as he “appeared to recognize the existential threats that AI presented.”

According to journalist Kara Swisher, interim CEO Mira Murati wanted Sam Altman and OpenAI’s President Greg Brockman back (who had also resigned following Altman’s exit announcement), albeit in undisclosed capacities. Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella was also involved in these talks, backing Altman’s return. OpenAI investors and key employees of the company had urged the Board of Directors to step down and reinstate Altman. However, as is now the case, the OpenAI Board has hired Emmett Shear for the top job, closing the door for Altman’s return.

Sam Altman seemingly alluded to the same in his latest tweet, mentioning that it is the “first and last time” he is wearing a guest badge at OpenAI. However, note that the tweet was posted before it came to light that OpenAI had hired Emmett Shear.

OpenAI Sam Altman Tweet

Kara Swisher mentions that Microsoft is interested in getting Altman onboard in some capacity, and many OpenAI employees are also expected to follow along. There is also speculation that the Board of Directors at OpenAI would be sued and that Microsoft could reconsider its deal with the AI-centric company.

This is unlikely to be the end of the OpenAI leadership drama. We’ll get to know more soon in the coming week as the world reacts to this latest development.

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