PlayStation 4, update 8.00 released last week, adding new avatars and an overhauled party system, however, users were concerned about a new feature of the console that records the console’s voice chat automatically.
In a blog post, the company states that the problem does not lie in the lack of privacy, but the way the information was presented, Sony affirms that the new feature’ sole purpose is to help in reporting of inappropriate behavior.
“We didn’t clearly communicate this feature or explain why we were introducing it, and we apologize for that. We should have more clearly explained why this function was being rolled out, along with details on how it will work on the PS5 console, so let me walk you through that now. ”
According to Sony, the PS5 voice chat will be permanently recorded as a way to stop harassment, users will have the last five minutes of the voice chat at disposal when filing a report. The company also promises that the new feature will “not actively monitor or listen in on your conversations” as it’s strictly reserved for reporting online abuse or harassment.
“They will be able to include up to a 40 second-long Voice Chat clip in their report — 20 seconds of the main conversation with the other player, plus an additional 10 seconds before and after the conversation selection. Only the most recent five minutes of a Voice Chat will be available for a player to use for this reporting function.
These reports can be submitted directly through the PS5 console, and will be sent to our Consumer Experience team for moderation, who will then listen to the recording and take action, if needed. Some submitted reports won’t be valid, and our team will take this as an opportunity to provide guidance and education. There won’t be an option to opt-out of this Voice Chat recording function because we want all users to feel safe when playing with others online, not just those who choose to enable it.”