Microsoft, Apple Give Up Observer Roles on OpenAI's Board

From PC Mag: Microsoft will give up its board observer role on the OpenAI board, while Apple will no longer pursue a similar position, The Financial Times reports.

In a letter to OpenAI, Microsoft’s deputy general counsel Keith Dolliver says it has "witnessed significant progress by the newly formed board" in the last eight months, so it doesn't think its "limited role as an observer is necessary" anymore.

According to the FT, the move is intended to avoid more regulatory scrutiny. In late 2023, the US Federal Trade Commission and the UK's Competition and Markets Authority opened investigations into Microsoft's billion-dollar OpenAI investments to see if they violated antitrust laws.

Microsoft took the observer role on OpenAI's following the chaotic firing (and rehiring) of CEO Sam Altman, which resulted in a board re-organization. The position does not include voting powers, but observers can attend board meetings.

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