Continuing in the realm of weird press releases today comes this gem about artificial intelligence company OpenAI and its leadership.
As the drama unfolds over leadership changes at AI lab OpenAI, valued at over $29 billion, social entrepreneur and thought leader Nicole Gibson, author of Legacy Disorder, has insightful commentary to offer on this saga that she believes reveals deeper issues around immature and reactive leadership in the tech industry.
Gibson contends that the volatile decision-making unfolding publicly at OpenAI reveals that some of the tech industry’s most powerful men are making hugely consequential leadership choices based on ego and emotion, rather than ethical responsibility. She argues that rash decisions made to satisfy personal power struggles could have devastating implications for humanity down the line if the leaders behind world-changing technology lack maturity and morals.
She continues about men. At the beginning of the “women’s liberation” movement when I was in university, I remember the argument that once women came into positions of power and responsibility they would bring some sort of “feminine” sensibility. I’m sure there are examples of that, but I’ve seen enough to think that it is not a universal trait. Perhaps like Sheryl Sandberg at Facebook (Meta)? I wrote several leadership editorials at Automation World and here about a school principal I knew who was the antithesis of anything close to good leadership.
Seems like human nature to me.
I remember a personality questionnaire from when I took a college summer class while in high school. I still puzzle over it. The personality traits were based on 31 questions. The results said I was 16 for masculine and 15 for feminine. One question was, do you like to hunt? My family weren’t hunters. I had never had a rifle or shotgun in my hands. So I was feminine?
Any way, rant over. Some human beings exemplify the Social Darwinism survival of the fittest doctrine. Some don’t.
Oh, and the unstated but apparent reason for the ouster of Sam Altman had to do with ethics. Three board members thought he was moving too quickly to unleash a potentially dystopian technology upon the unsuspecting world. It was ethics in their eyes. Microsoft had another ethic—called return to shareholders.
I must agree that many of the Silicon Valley types over the past 20 years have exhibited more characteristics of not-fully-brain-developed teenage boys than mature humans.
You sort it out.