Elon Musk pushed for a merger with Tesla or having attained full control, OpenAI said in a recent blog post. The company's statement comes after Musk, earlier this week filed a lawsuit, stating that OpenAI deviated from its initial mission of constructing AI systems for the public good and shifted towards prioritising profit maximisation, particularly under Microsoft's influence.

Responding to the lawsuit, OpenAI in a blog post titled "Elon Musk and Open AI," underscored that in 2017, the company recognised the need for substantial capital to realise Artificial General Intelligence (AGI). As discussions veered towards for-profit structure, claims OpenAI, Musk pressed for either a merger with Tesla or attaining full control.

“As we discussed a for-profit structure in order to further the mission, Elon wanted us to merge with Tesla or he wanted full control. Elon left OpenAI, saying there needed to be a relevant competitor to Google/DeepMind and that he was going to do it himself. He said he’d be supportive of us finding our own path,” said OpenAI.

Amidst these deliberations, funding stalled, prompting Reid Hoffman's intervention to cover essential costs. Musk sought majority equity, board control, and the CEO position.

OpenAI's response to Musk's lawsuit refuted claims that the company had strayed from its mission. The blog post presented Musk's prior endorsements of OpenAI's fundraising efforts through reproduced emails. Despite initial plans to raise $100 million, Musk advocated for a more ambitious figure, suggesting a $1 billion commitment, stating, "This needs billions per year immediately or forget it."

The blog post stated “When starting OpenAI in late 2015, Greg and Sam had initially planned to raise $100M. Elon said in an email: “We need to go with a much bigger number than $100M to avoid sounding hopeless… I think we should say that we are starting with a $1B funding commitment… I will cover whatever anyone else doesn't provide.”

OpenAI further disclosed Musk's email emphasising Tesla as the only viable path to contend with giants like Google. Musk's evolving stance on corporate influence became evident, and the blog post painted a picture of discord, with OpenAI expressing sadness at the turn of events, especially considering Musk's initial inspiration and subsequent legal actions.

In February 2018, Musk departed OpenAI, asserting that the likelihood of their success was zero. He articulated his intention to establish an AGI competitor within Tesla. Upon his departure in the latter part of February 2018, Musk communicated to the OpenAI team his encouragement to chart their own course in securing substantial funding.

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