Microsoft cutbacks entire AI dedicated team as it dives into OpenAI

Microsoft, the leading American technology giant, has reportedly terminated an entire team in charge of directing artificial intelligence (AI) innovation toward ethical, sustainable, and responsible outcomes. According to Platformer, the termination of the ethics and society department is part of a recent round of cutbacks that impacted 10,000 workers throughout the company.

Microsoft has recently redesigned its Bing search engine as well as Edge web browser to be driven by a new, next-generation linguistic model that is more effective than ChatGPT and customized particularly for search. It has also invested billions in its collaboration with OpenAI, the company behind the art- and text-generating AI platforms such as ChatGPT and DALL-E 2. At the same time, the tech giant has provided hefty funds to research and development initiatives.

Apparently, the move raises questions about Microsoft's commitment for guaranteeing that its product innovation and AI principles are inextricably linked at a time when the corporation is releasing controversial AI capabilities to the public.

The Microsoft Office of Responsible AI (ORA), which establishes guidelines for ethical AI via governance and public policy initiatives, is still operational.

As per reports, employees informed Platformer, however, the ethics and society team is in charge of making sure that Microsoft's responsible AI ideals are represented in the product design that deliver. The group had recently been focusing on identifying dangers brought on by Microsoft's adoption of OpenAI software across a range of its products.

The ethics and society team was not particularly big; after a restructuring in October, only roughly seven members were left. According to sources who talked with Platformer, CEO Satya Nadella, and CTO Kevin Scott are exerting increasing pressure to deliver the latest OpenAI models and subsequent updates into customers' hands as soon as feasible.

For the unversed, teams such as Microsoft's ethics and society division frequently exert control over large tech companies by highlighting potential societal effects or legal concerns.

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