‘Betrayal:’ Elon Musk Sues OpenAI over Abandonment of Nonprofit AI Mission

Elon Musk plotting
Nathan Laine/Bloomberg/Getty

Elon Musk is taking legal action against artificial intelligence giant OpenAI, claiming the ChatGPT developer has strayed from its founding mission of developing AI to benefit humanity by pursuing profits through a partnership with Microsoft.

TechCrunch reports that Elon Musk has filed a lawsuit against artificial intelligence startup OpenAI, alleging the company has abandoned its founding mission to develop AI for the benefit of humanity.

The lawsuit, filed in San Francisco on Thursday, claims that OpenAI and its leaders Sam Altman and Greg Brockman convinced Musk to help found and fund the nonprofit in 2015. They promised OpenAI would counter competitive threats from major tech firms by making its technologies “freely available” to the public.

OpenAI boss Sam Altman

OpenAI boss Sam Altman (Kevin Dietsch/Getty)

But after partnering with Microsoft, which has invested around $13 billion, OpenAI apparently shifted to a for-profit model focused on commercializing its research. Musk’s lawsuit alleges this “was a stark betrayal of the Founding Agreement.”

As evidence, it cites a statement from Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella that his company now has “all the IP rights and all the capability” even if OpenAI disappeared. The suit also points to OpenAI’s development of the powerful chatbot ChatGPT, which was launched late last year and sparked a fierce AI race.

Musk claims OpenAI and Microsoft have improperly licensed ChatGPT and the even more advanced GPT-4. Under the original OpenAI charter, AI capabilities were to remain dedicated to humanity rather than profits.

The Tesla and SpaceX CEO, who left OpenAI’s board in 2018, is seeking injunctions to compel OpenAI back to its public-minded founding principles. He also requests accounting of his early donations to the nonprofit, which exceeded $44 million by late 2020.

A spokesperson for OpenAI stated the claims are “unfounded” and the company remains committed to safely developing AI to benefit all humanity. Legal experts say the case faces an uphill battle given OpenAI’s evolution beyond its early incarnation.

Read more at TechCrunch here.

Lucas Nolan is a reporter for Breitbart News covering issues of free speech and online censorship.

Authored by Lucas Nolan via Breitbart March 1st 2024