Ought has spun off Elicit as a public benefit corporation, selling its IP and transferring most of its staff. The decision to sell the IP was made by an independent board of directors (Owain Evans, Paul Christiano, and Owen Cotton-Barratt), without conflicts of interest in the new entity, and advised by nonprofit lawyers and aided by an independent valuation of the IP.
We believe that this decision is the best way to pursue Ought’s mission, by allowing Elicit to raise funding and scale up its efforts. We also believe that it is a prudent financial decision narrowly on the part of Ought based on the value of the equity stake Ought now holds in Elicit.
Elicit will share Ought’s mission: ensuring that continuing progress in ML can be used to help humans arrive at good answers to challenging questions. We believe that it may be important to keep this capability as advanced as technologically feasible at any moment in time.
Elicit has now raised $9 million in funding, and most former Ought staff are working at the new organization. To learn more about the organization’s plans you can follow the Elicit blog. We expect operations at Ought to be minimal for the next few years. If Elicit performs well and returns profits to its investors then Ought may resume activities.
By the Ought Board of Directors