Over the weekend, Google employee Blake Lemoine made international headlines by claiming that the company’s machine learning-powered chatbot model LaMDA (Language Model for Dialogue Applications) was sentient and alive.
Lemoine stated in a Washington Post news article that he became convinced of LaMDA’s sentience after the model expressed anxieties, including a “very deep fear of being turned off.” Google placed Lemoine on paid leave shortly after he publicly disclosed this information.
Google also indicated that internal teams looked into Lemoine’s statements and found no evidence to back up his claims.
Lemoine’s story went viral after receiving coverage from reputable publications, including The Washington Post and The New York Times. As a result, many observers have questions regarding the Google employee.
In response to the flood of requests for comment, Lemoine took to Twitter to inform everyone seeking to reach him that he is unavailable and on his honeymoon.
“For all of the people reaching out to me, I’m on my Honeymoon currently,” he wrote. “I won’t have much time for interviews until after the 21st.”
Isn’t it strange that Lemoine takes a getaway immediately after endangering his job by revealing LaMDA to the world? Still, we’re glad he’s taking advantage of his mandatory paid time off to reconnect with his spouse.