When the 8.0.0 update rolled out to PlayStation 4 systems earlier this week it provided more granular control for parents to use around their kids’ communications, but it also popped up an ominous warning about the possibility of voice communications being recorded.
Update: Details on new voice chat functionality coming to PS5: https://t.co/WKC3XPnZ1B— PlayStation (@PlayStation) October 16, 2020
Sony later updated its announcement blog post to explain that the notification is related to new features on the PS5, and today it went into more detail about how that works. According to the PlayStation Blog post, while voice chats won’t be monitored or listened to actively, on the new system there is an option to report harassment that includes up a voice chat clip of up to 40 seconds in length, trimmed from the most recent five minutes. There is no opt-out of this — if you use voice chat on PS5, someone in your chat can clip your audio and submit it for review by the moderation team.
Given the things we’ve heard in our headsets over the years, it’s understandable why Sony would want to push for ways to reduce harassment and abuse in chat, and make it a place that people are comfortable spending time in. The clip feature doesn’t seem like it will be available on the PS4, but because players can communicate cross-gen, the notification was necessary.