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LinkedIn cofounder Reid Hoffman leaves OpenAI’s board

Reid Hoffman, co-founder of LinkedIn and a member of OpenAI’s board of directors, has announced his departure from the company to avoid conflicts of interest. In a statement posted online, Hoffman revealed that his venture capital firm Greylock has been funding companies that are using tools developed by OpenAI, which he believes presents a potential conflict of interest.

Hoffman has been involved with OpenAI since its inception in 2015, providing both financial support and guidance to the company. However, his involvement with other companies that use OpenAI’s technology has made it difficult for him to remain on the board.

Despite his departure, Hoffman remains supportive of OpenAI’s mission to advance AI technology in a responsible and ethical manner. He has expressed confidence in the company’s leadership and the progress it has made to date.

“By stepping off the board, I can proactively put to rest any downstream potential issues for both OpenAI and all Greylock portfolio companies I’ve backed,” Hoffman said in a LinkedIn post.

OpenAI CEO Sam Altman thanked him in a Twitter post and said that he looks forward “to much more collaboration in the future!”

The departure highlights the growing competition in the AI industry, as more companies seek to capitalize on the transformative potential of the technology. He remains on the board of Microsoft Corp, which is both a major partner and investor in OpenAI.

Hoffman’s venture capital firm, Greylock, has been investing in a number of AI startups, including Inflection AI, which is working on technology similar to that developed by OpenAI. Other Greylock-backed companies, such as Tome, a presentation generator, have also been using OpenAI’s tools, further complicating Hoffman’s role on the board.

As the AI industry continues to evolve, conflicts of interest are likely to become increasingly common. Hoffman’s decision to step down from the OpenAI board underscores the importance of transparency and accountability in the development and deployment of AI technology. Reuters

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