OpenAI’s new CEO may insist that all is well between the AI company and Microsoft, but it appears he wasn’t a fan of working at the company during an early stage of his career.
Scheer — who co-founded and previously headed live streaming service Twitch — was named interim CEO of OpenAI on Sunday following the shock ousting of Sam Altman.
However, the tech entrepreneur comes into the role not only with the mission of winning over OpenAI’s rebellious workforce, but also apparently unimpressed with a major business partner.
In a post on social media platform X earlier this year, he recounted his experience as an intern at Microsoft – a major investor in OpenAI.
When I was interning at Microsoft, every paycheck felt like I was getting a little piece of my soul in the mail
– Emmett Sherr (@esher) July 27, 2023
It’s not clear exactly when Scheer interned at the tech giant, or in what capacity.
Until taking the top job at OpenAI, Scheer described himself in his Profile X biography as “very stubborn.” That description has now been deleted and replaced with the bio: “Interim CEO of OpenAI.”
His unfiltered thoughts on what it’s like to work at Microsoft is one of a series of controversial social media posts.
Just last week, he to publish that “most CEO jobs (and the majority of executive jobs) are highly automatable” alongside a screenshot of an article discussing whether or not CEOs could be replaced by artificial intelligence.
in Another post earlier this yearengaged in a conversation about sexual consent and so-called “freedom” — where participants agree to be sexually available to their partners at all times — citing a Wikipedia article to argue that “40-60% of women appear to have rape/non-consent fantasies.”
Representatives for OpenAI and Shear did not respond luckRequest for comment.
Shear’s X post about his internship at Microsoft came after he stepped down from Twitch to spend time with his infant son.
But now, the tech entrepreneur — who sold his company to Amazon for nearly $1 billion in 2014 — finds himself on the same team as the tech giant as he faces employee revolt and continued investor loyalty to his predecessor.
in statement Published on X early Monday, Scheer insisted that OpenAI’s partnership with Microsoft “remains strong.” He pledged to use his first month on the job to hold conversations with as many employees, partners and investors as possible, and “share the key points.”
“I will drive changes in the organization – including pushing hard for significant changes in management if necessary,” he said. “OpenAI’s stability and success are too important to be allowed to be disrupted by disruption in this way. I will seek to address key concerns as well, although I think in many cases it may take more than a month to make real progress.”
Microsoft, which has invested more than $10 billion in the creator of ChatGPT, did not respond luckQuestions about Cher’s previous tweets.
However, the company has publicly doubled down on its commitment to OpenAI in the wake of the AI startup’s chaos.
“We are committed to our partnership with OpenAI and have confidence in our product roadmap, our ability to continue innovating on everything we announced at Microsoft Ignite, and in continuing to support our customers and partners,” said CEO Satya Nadella. Share on X. “We look forward to getting to know and work with Emmett Shear and OAI’s new leadership team.”
However, Microsoft has also remained loyal to Altman, bringing him on board and ousting OpenAI chief Greg Brockman to lead its new in-house AI division — and Nadella hinted in an interview with CNBC on Monday that Altman’s return to OpenAI is still on the cards.
“We want Sam and Greg to have a great home if they’re not at OpenAI,” he said, adding that it’s up to OpenAI’s board, leadership and staff to decide whether Altman can be reinstated in some positions at the startup. .
“We chose to partner with OpenAI and we want to continue to do that, and obviously that depends on people at OpenAI staying there or coming to Microsoft, so I’m open to both options,” he said when asked if Altman might return to OpenAI.
Altman was ousted as CEO of OpenAI on Friday afternoon, with the company saying he was “not always honest” with its board. Brockman resigned with him in an apparent show of solidarity.
The move sparked a backlash from several hundred OpenAI employees, most of whom threatened to leave the company if the board of directors did not resign over Altman’s firing. Investors in the company, including Microsoft’s Nadella, reportedly spent the weekend trying to convince OpenAI to rehire Altman and Brockman.
Before Shear accepted his new job at OpenAI — which he described as a “once-in-a-lifetime opportunity” — the CEO position was temporarily held by the company’s CTO Mira Murati. Moratti was reportedly planning to reassign Altman back to another role at the company before he was replaced by Cher.