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Machine Learning Researcher Links OpenAI to Drug-Fueled Sex Parties

🌈 Abstract

The article discusses claims made by a machine learning researcher, Sonia Joseph, about alleged "consensual non-consent" sex parties and heavy drug use within the artificial general intelligence (AGI) enthusiast community in Silicon Valley. The article also touches on the recent departure of OpenAI's superalignment chief, Jan Leike, and the potential connection to the broader issues raised by Joseph.

🙋 Q&A

[01] The Researcher's Claims

1. What are the key claims made by Sonia Joseph in her social media posts?

  • Joseph claims to have witnessed "troubling things" in Silicon Valley's "community house scene" when she was new to the tech industry in her early 20s.
  • She alleges the existence of "consensual non-consent (CNC) sex parties" and "heavy LSD use" among some elite AI researchers, which she believes have been detrimental to women in the AI industry.
  • Joseph states that this culture "leads to some of the most coercive and fucked up social dynamics" and that she has seen people get "shut down" for trying to point out these problems.
  • She suggests these issues are symptomatic of a "deeper rot in the Valley" and are not limited to just OpenAI.

2. What is Joseph's connection to OpenAI?

  • Joseph clarifies that she has no affiliation with OpenAI and has never worked there. She says she observed the AI culture in Silicon Valley as a "fly-on-the-wall" through the "community house scene".

3. How does Joseph's claims relate to the departure of OpenAI's superalignment chief, Jan Leike?

  • Joseph states that she has "no idea" why Leike and the superalignment team resigned from OpenAI and cannot make any claims about it. She suggests her observations are more broadly relevant to the AI industry.

[02] Reactions and Responses

1. How have others responded to Joseph's claims?

  • The article mentions that Joseph had "three OpenAI and Anthropic researchers debate whether [she] was mentally ill on a Google document" when she tried to point out the problems she observed.
  • The article also states that it is "hard to make heads or tails of these claims" and that more information has been requested from both Joseph and OpenAI.

2. What is the broader context around these allegations?

  • The article notes that Joseph's claims come in the wake of an Atlantic exposé last year that revealed "seemingly cultish rituals" involving OpenAI cofounder Ilya Sutskever, but that piece did not suggest anything about sex, drugs, or kink.
  • The article suggests Joseph's observations may be symptomatic of "a much deeper rot in the Valley" beyond just OpenAI.
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