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Elon Musk sues OpenAI and CEO Sam Altman over contract breach


Sam Altman, CEO of OpenAI, attends the 54th annual meeting of the World Economic Forum, in Davos, Switzerland, on Jan. 18, 2024.

Denis Balibouse | Reuters

Elon Musk filed a lawsuit against OpenAI and its CEO Sam Altman, among others, accusing they breached their contract by abandoning their mission to develop artificial intelligence “for the benefit of humanity broadly.”

In a lawsuit filed on Thursday with a San Francisco court, Musk’s lawyers said the tech billionaire was approached in 2015 by Altman and OpenAI co-founder Greg Brockman and agreed to form a non-profit lab that would develop artificial general intelligence for the “benefit of humanity.”

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

Musk’s lawyers said in the lawsuit that OpenAI’s focus on maximizing profits for Microsoft breaks that agreement.

“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 filing said.

OpenAI and Microsoft were not immediately available for comment.

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