Satya Nadella, Microsoft's chief executive, made a bet on generative A.I. in 2019 when Microsoft invested $1 billion in OpenAI.

After deciding the technology was ready over the summer, Mr. Nadella pushed every Microsoft product team to adopt A.I.

Microsoft had policies developed by its Office of Responsible A.I., a team run by Ms. Crampton, but the guidelines were not consistently enforced or followed said five current or former employees.

Despite having a ''transparency'' principle, ethics experts working on the chatbot were not given answers about what data OpenAI used to develop its systems, according to three people involved in the work.

Some argued that integrating chatbots into a search engine was a particularly bad idea, given how it sometimes served up untrue details, a person with  direct knowledge of the conversation said.

Ms. Crampton said experts across Microsoft worked on Bing, and key people had access to the training data. The company worked to make the chatbot more accurate by linking it to Bing search results, she added.

In autumn, Microsoft started breaking up what had been one of its largest technology ethics teams. The group, Ethics and Society, trained and consulted company product leaders to design and build responsibly.

In October, most of its members were spun off to other groups, according to four people familiar with the team.

The remaining few joined daily meetings with the Bing team, racing to inaugurate the chatbot. John Montgomery, an A.I. executive told them in December email that their work remained vital and more teams ''will also need our help.''

After the A.I. powered Bing was introduced, the ethics team documented lingering concerns. Users could become too dependent on the tool. Inaccurate answers could mislead users. People could believe the chatbot, which uses an ''I'' and emojis, was human.

In mid-March, the tech team was laid off, an action that was reported by the tech newsletter Platformer. But Ms. Carmpton said hundreds of employees were still working on ethics efforts.

Microsoft has released new products every week, a frantic pace to meet plans that Mr. Nadella set in motion in summer when he previewed OpenAI's newest model.

He asked the chatbot to translate the Persian poet Rumi into Urdu, and then write it out in English characters. '' It worked like a charm,'' he said in a February interview.

'' Then I said, 'God this thing.' ''

The World Students Society thanks authors Nico Grant, Karen Weiss, Mike Isaac, Susan C Beachy [research].


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