Elon Musk Left OpenAI After Company Declined To Merge With Tesla

Musk filed a suit against OpenAI last week, accusing them of being profit-driven.

Tech & Gadgets
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Last week, Elon Musk filed a lawsuit against OpenAI – a company he was a co-founder and early backer of – accusing it of abandoning the original mission to create AI “for the benefit of humanity broadly.”

More specifically, Musk pointed to the partnership between OpenAI’s for-profit arm, called OpenAI Global, with Microsoft as solely focused on driving profits for the tech giant.

“To this day, OpenAI, Inc.‘s website continues to profess that its charter is to ensure that AGI benefits all of humanity,’” the suit read. “In reality, however, OpenAI, Inc. has been transformed into a closed-source de facto subsidiary of the largest technology company in the world: Microsoft.”

OpenAI has now publicly responded to the suit in a blog post, which includes emails sent back and forth between Musk, Sam Altman, Greg Brockman and Ilya Sutskever.

“In late 2017, we and Elon decided the next step for the mission was to create a for-profit entity,” the post reads. “Elon wanted majority equity, initial board control, and to be CEO. In the middle of these discussions, he withheld funding.”

OpenAI says that when they couldn’t agree on terms for the for-profit venture as they didn’t want any individual to have control over the company, Musk advocated for merging OpenAI with Tesla. In one email, Musk said that OpenAI should “attach to Tesla as its cash cow” and thought of the merger as the only means by which the company could compete with Google.
OpenAI’s co-founders detail that Musk departed the company after they disagreed with the idea and he “planned to build an AGI competitor within Tesla.”

“We’re sad that it’s come to this with someone whom we’ve deeply admired—someone who inspired us to aim higher, then told us we would fail, started a competitor, and then sued us when we started making meaningful progress towards OpenAI’s mission without him,” OpenAI says.

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