Sony has posted new details on PlayStation 5’s recording of voice chats, after the company appeared to have been caught off guard earlier this week when it released the latest PlayStation 4 system software update and users caught on. unexpectedly the function.
“We have not clearly communicated this feature or explained why we were introducing it, and we apologize for it,” Catherine Jensen, Sony Interactive Entertainment’s vice president of global consumer experience, said Friday afternoon in a post on the PlayStation Blog.
After the release of version 8.00 of the PS4 system software on Wednesday, players started seeing a notification and message on the console regarding its group chat feature. Entitled “Party Safety Information,”
Sony subsequently updated its PlayStation blog post on firmware v8.00 to acknowledge the “Party Safety Information” message and notification, explaining that the recording feature would be available exclusively on PS5 when the console launches on 12. November. The update also said that the feature would allow users to send recordings to Sony for moderation purposes. But the whole episode raised eyebrows among the PlayStation community, especially when it comes to privacy concerns, leading Sony to post more details on Friday.
All PlayStation users can submit reports on abusive players they meet online, but only PS5 users will have the option to send a voice chat clip along with a report. Jensen made it clear that PS5 users and PS4 users will be able to group chat together, which necessitated the warning in Wednesday’s PS4 firmware update for a feature Sony evidently intended to explain later.
“If a PS5 player needs to file a harassment report, they will be able to include up to 40 seconds of voice chat clips in their report: 20 seconds of the main conversation with the other player, plus an additional 10 seconds before and after. conversation selection, ”Jensen said. “Only the most recent five minutes of a voice chat will be available for a player to use for this reporting feature.”
Logging is enabled by default on PS5 and users will not have the option to disable it.
“There won’t be an option to disable this voice chat recording feature because we want all users to feel safe when playing with others online, not just those who choose to enable it,” said Jensen. However, Jensen pointed out that “this feature will not actively monitor or listen to your conversations, always. “Instead, the recording capacity is reserved only for the capture of audio to accompany reports of abuse or harassment.
It appears that the PS5 will keep an ongoing recording of the last five minutes of chat, but that only one user can initiate the process of sending the audio to Sony. What’s unclear is whether the recording feature applies to all voice chats, including game chat, or is limited to group chat only. (If players hear harassment or abuse online, it tends to come from random people they get involved with in a multiplayer match, rather than a person they’ve invited into a group chat.) We’ve asked Sony for clarification and we’ll update this article with all the information we will receive.
PS5 users will be able to send these reports directly from the console. They will go to the Consumer Experience division of PlayStation, where moderators will review the complaint, listen to the recording and, if appropriate, take action.
The PlayStation Community Code of Conduct prohibits hate speech, whether it uses or promotes it; threaten, harass, harass or stalk someone; encourage anyone to hurt themselves or someone else; or be “vulgar or offensive”, among other rules.
But behavior that deserves a penalty, compared to one that can only be nervous or in bad taste, will not always be a clear case. “Some reports submitted will not be valid and our team will take this as an opportunity to provide assistance and education,” said Jensen.