Elon Musk sues OpenAI, for ‘betrayal’ of non-profit AI mission!! is this good? or is it just to help Musk’s profits?!

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Elon Musk has sued OpenAI, its co-founders Sam Altman and Greg Brockman and affiliated entities, alleging the ChatGPT makers have breached their original contractual agreements by pursuing profits instead of the non-profit’s founding mission to develop AI that benefits humanity.

Musk, a co-founder and early backer of OpenAI, claims Altman and Brockman convinced him to help found and bankroll the startup in 2015 with promises it would be a non-profit focused on countering the competitive threat from Google. The founding agreement required OpenAI to make its technology “freely available” to the public, the lawsuit alleges.

The lawsuit, filed in a court in San Francisco late Thursday, says that OpenAI, the world’s most valuable AI startup, has shifted to a for-profit model focused on commercializing its AGI research after partnering with Microsoft, the world’s most valuable company that has invested about $13 billion into the startup.

“In reality, however, OpenAI, Inc. has been transformed into a closed-source de facto subsidiary of the largest technology company in the world: Microsoft. Under its new board, it is not just developing but is actually refining an AGI to maximize profits for Microsoft, rather than for the benefit of humanity,” the lawsuit adds. “This was a stark betrayal of the Founding Agreement.”

The lawsuit follows Musk airing concerns about OpenAI’s shift in priorities in the past year. According to the legal complaint, Musk donated over $44 million to the non-profit between 2016 to September 2020. For the first several years, he was the largest contributor to OpenAI, the lawsuit adds. Musk, who left OpenAI’s board in 2018, has been offered a stake in the for-profit arm of the startup but has refused to accept it over a principled stand, he said earlier.

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Elon Musk has sued ChatGPT-maker OpenAI and its CEO Sam Altman, saying they abandoned the startup’s original mission to develop artificial intelligence for the benefit of humanity and not for profit.

The lawsuit filed late on Thursday in San Francisco puts the billionaire at loggerheads with the startup that he co-founded and is now the face of generative AI, partly due to the billions of dollars in funding from Microsoft.

Musk alleged a breach of contract, saying Altman and co-founder Greg Brockman originally approached him to make an open source, non-profit company, but the startup established in 2015 is now focused on making money.

He sought a court ruling asking OpenAI to make its research and technology available to the public and prevent the startup from using its assets, including its most advanced AI model GPT-4, for the financial gains of Microsoft or any individual.

OpenAI, Microsoft and Musk did not immediately respond to Reuters requests for comment.

Musk, who runs Tesla and rocket maker SpaceX and bought Twitter for $44 billion in October 2022, has on several occasions called for regulation on AI.


The lawsuit, however, also makes a more substantial claim which—if upheld by the San Francisco Superior Court—could fundamentally reshape how OpenAI and its partner Microsoft do business. (Microsoft has invested $13 billion in OpenAI.)

First, the crucial context: As part of their partnership agreement, Microsoft has exclusive commercial rights to OpenAI’s intellectual property, including the algorithms behind ChatGPT and its successor GPT-4. But there is a notable caveat: these commercial rights only apply to “pre-AGI technology.” And it is OpenAI’s board that has the right to determine when AGI—artificial general intelligence, or an AI system that can perform economically valuable tasks similar to a human—has been reached.

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In November 2023, the OpenAI board fired Altman. During the five days that followed, Microsoft and OpenAI employees applied significant pressure to the board to reverse that decision, ultimately successfully. Altman returned as CEO, and all but one of the board’s members who had voted to oust Altman were themselves removed. (Altman and Brockman were also removed from the board.) Microsoft, which did not previously have a seat on the board, was given an observer position with no voting power. These events, Musk’s lawsuit alleges, amounted to a “coup” that had the effect of ensuring the new OpenAI board, which the suit argues were “handpicked by Mr. Altman and Microsoft,” would be unlikely to declare that AGI had been reached, thus allowing Microsoft to continue profiting from the technology.

“To this day, OpenAI, Inc.’s website continues to profess that its charter is to ensure that AGI ‘benefits all of humanity,’” the lawsuit states. “In reality, however, OpenAI, Inc. has been transformed into a closed-source de facto subsidiary of the largest technology company in the world: Microsoft. Under its new Board, it is not just developing but is actually refining an AGI to maximize profits for Microsoft, rather than for the benefit of humanity.”


Elon Musk Sues OpenAI and Altman for Breaching Firm’s Founding Mission
Suit says OpenAI puts profit ahead of benefiting humanity

Musk is raising money for a competing venture called xAI


What is Musk’s real agenda here? is he doing this for altrusitsic reasons, or just to help his own company? I’m not sure!!


h/t Digital mix guy Spock

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