Tech CEO May Have Used ChatGPT Bot To Write Martin Luther King Into Layoff Notice

Tech CEO May Have Used ChatGPT Bot To Write Martin Luther King Into Layoff Notice


Screenshot of ChatGPT message composition. (Twitter @mattstratton) / Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. (Library of Congress)

Earlier this week a tech CEO came under fire for invoking Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in the same email she announced layoffs. Now, because of an experimental tweet, some suspect PagerDuty CEO Jennifer Tejada of using ChatGPT to compose the message.

On Tuesday, Jan. 24, Tejada sent employees an email announcing the company had considered “a range of approaches for strengthening the company as we move forward” and would be making several “refinements” to improve its return on investment.

The company reposted the email on its website.

Among the actions to be taken was eliminating 7 percent of roles globally, reducing discretionary spending and more. In the same breath, Tejada announced promotions and appointments then quoted a line from Dr. King

“I am reminded in moments like this of something Martin Luther King said, that ‘the ultimate measure of a [leader] is not where [they] stand in the moments of comfort and convenience, but where [they] stand in times of challenge and controversy,’” Tejada wrote.

It didn’t take long for the backlash to ensue on social media. Writer Gergely Orosz pointed out his belief that Tejada may have used AI to write it.

“The most tone-deaf layoff email I read so far was written yesterday, and it comes from PagerDuty CEO Jennifer Tejada,” Orosz wrote. “The email is vey long, and feels like it was written by an AI that took all the phrases that people usually say, and put it one long email.”

The next day, software developer Dare Obasanjo posted a screenshot of Matt Stratton’s tweet showing an experiment he did in ChatGPT that suggested Tejada’s tweet could have been composed using the groundbreaking platform.

Users flooded Stratton’s comments stating they thought he may have been trolling them, but tried it themselves and got similar results.

“Lol I thought you photoshopped this so I tried it myself. 100% real,” @d_feldman tweeted, along with a screenshot of his attempt.

It has not been confirmed that Tejada used ChatGPT to compose her message, but that didn’t stop Twitter users from having a field day with the notion.

User @bdimcheff suggested, “throw in something about operational resilience and you’ve got yourself a press release.”