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Another Silicon Valley Firm Accused of Exploiting African Workers

As San-Francisco-based AI development firm OpenAI’s dream of achieving general artificial intelligence (AI) picks up speed, reports of how it used 200 underpaid Kenyans to remove racism, sexism, and violence from ChatGPT-3’s language model are appalling. OpenAI didn’t learn from Meta, which was sued in Nairobi last May by content moderators for union busting and contracting Sama, a company that subjected them to inhumane working conditions while removing harmful content from Facebook’s algorithms. Now, after OpenAI’s GPT-3 project of perfecting the results the platform generates was completed last November, Sama retrenched all employees and closed the Nairobi office for good. In a blog post on Jan. 10, Sama said that it understood “that this is a difficult day, [but] we believe it is the right long-term decision for our business.” It asked sacked workers to apply for “other open positions in the Sama East African offices.”