OpenAI boss Sam Altman joins Giving Pledge

28 May 2024, 18:04

Sam Altman
Philanthropy-Altman-Giving Pledge. Picture: PA

Mr Altman says he wants to focus his philanthropic giving on ‘technology that helps create abundance for people’.

The Giving Pledge has announced that OpenAI chief executive Sam Altman has joined its list of wealthy philanthropists committed to donating more than half of their fortunes.

The move comes after a tumultuous six months for Mr Altman, the co-founder of the San Francisco-based company behind ChatGPT and a venture capitalist who Forbes says amassed much of his one billion dollars (£782 million) through investments.

His removal and subsequent reinstatement as chief executive last November stunned the rapidly commercialising industry as internal conflicts threatened to sink one of the most sought-after voices on artificial intelligence.

Now Mr Altman, who initially founded his company as a non-profit research lab dedicated to safely building AI for humanity’s benefit, says he wants to focus his philanthropic giving on “technology that helps create abundance for people”.

“We would not be making this pledge if it weren’t for the hard work, brilliance, generosity, and dedication to improve the world of many people that built the scaffolding of society that let us get here,” Mr Altman wrote alongside husband and technology investor Oliver Mulherin in a May 18 Giving Pledge letter.

“There is nothing we can do except feel immense gratitude and commit to pay it forward, and do what we can to build the scaffolding up a little higher.”

The Associated Press (AP) and OpenAI have a licensing and technology agreement that allows OpenAI access to part of the AP’s text archives.

Bill Gates, Melinda French Gates and Warren Buffett founded the Giving Pledge in 2010 to foster a culture of philanthropy among the world’s wealthiest people to tackle urgent problems.

More than 240 signatories from 30 countries have committed to giving the majority of their wealth to charity, though critics argue there is little oversight to ensure that community members follow through on their vows.

The latest additions also include Mercuria chief executive Marco Dunand and entrepreneur Suzan Craig Dunand, who co-founded a Swiss foundation that seeks to accelerate the transition to net zero carbon emissions; 94-year-old Robert D Goldfarb, a retired value investor who plans to give 90% of his wealth during his lifetime; investor Jahm Najafi and entrepreneur Cheryl Najafi, who have recently focused their giving on racial equity; and technology investment capital firm head Hemant Taneja and real estate developer Jessica Schantz Taneja.

By Press Association

Latest World News

See more Latest World News

Alex Jones speaking to the media after arriving at court in Houston, Texas, for a hearing in front of a bankruptcy judge on Friday

Judge rules Alex Jones’ assets to be sold to help pay Sandy Hook debt

South African president Cyril Ramaphosa raises his hands in parliament after being re-elected for a second term

Cyril Ramaphosa re-elected as South African president for second term after deal

Co-founder of Ozy Media, Carlos Watson arrives at Brooklyn Federal Court, for an earlier hearing

Google chief gives evidence at fraud trial of Ozy Media founder

Justice Department

US attorney general will not be prosecuted for contempt of Congress

A 12-year-old child was injured at the Valkea shopping centre in Oulu after a stabbing

'Far-right' knifeman attacks two children at Finnish shopping centre, leaving 12-year-old seriously wounded

The leaders of France left-wing coalition for the upcoming election Green Party Yannick Jadot, Communist Party national secretary Fabien Roussel, Socialist Party Secretary General Olivier Faure Presid

France’s leftist alliance leaders vow to ‘extinguish the flame’ of far right

G7 world leaders and other leaders from guest nations attend a working session on artificial intelligence, on day two of the 50th G7 summit in southern Italy

G7 leaders tackle migration, AI and economic security on final day of summit

Cyril Ramaphosa listens as members of parliament are sworn in ahead of an expected vote to decide if he is re-elected as leader of the country

Ramaphosa set for re-election in South Africa after coalition agreement

Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky talks to journalists during a news conference in Italy

How 50 billion-dollar loan for Ukraine backed by frozen Russian assets will work

Lynn Conway sitting on a bench at the University of Michigan

Lynn Conway, microchip pioneer who overcame transgender prejudice, dies aged 86

Johnny Canales on stage at the Tejano Music Awards in San Antonio, Texas in 2012

Tejano singer and TV host Johnny Canales dies at 77

A rare white buffalo calf, reportedly born in Yellowstone National Park’s Lamar Valley, with an adult buffalo on grassland

Reported birth of rare white buffalo calf ‘fulfils tribal prophecy’

An Israeli flag flutters next to a fire burning in an area near the border with Lebanon, northern Israel

Hezbollah warns its intensified attacks show Israel all-out war would be costly

Vladimir Putin

Putin pledges ceasefire in Ukraine if Kyiv withdraws troops and drops Nato bid

Actor and producer Ron Simons pictured in a red jumper during the 2011 Sundance Film Festival

Tony Award-winning Broadway producer Ron Simons dies aged 63

Chamchuri with her newborn elephant twins in Ayutthaya province, Thailand

Rare twin elephants in Thailand receive monks’ blessings