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Is the PlayStation 5 recording your voice chat?

New details about the voice chat functionality on PlayStation 5 raised eyebrows in the PlayStation community. Can Sony "spy" on your PS5 conversations and save audio files of your voice chat?

Sony has recently shared some new information in regards to PlayStation 5 voice chat and its functionalities. 

Many of those new features were already implemented to PlayStation 4 last week as a part of the recent PS4 8.00 system update, which caught many players off guard since it wasn't previously announced.

ps5_voice_chat_cover
(Picture: Sony)

Sony added those new features to  thePS4 system because they will allow for PS4 and PS5 players to communicate between each other and that's why it is important for them to have the same set of functions on both systems.

Among the new features, there's a function that allows players to record and send audio files of their voice communication with other people online during their games.

PS4 players were getting the following message:

“Please be aware that voice chats in parties may be recorded and sent to us by other users. By participating in voice chats, you agree to your voice being recorded. These recordings will be used only for safety and moderation purposes by PlayStation Safety.”

ps5_voice_chat_recording_ps4
(Picture: Sony)

Since no information has been previously shared about this particular feature, it quickly sparked controversy and concerns amongst PlayStation players. Mostly because it looked like something that could breach players' privacy.

Let's take a look at how will this work and remove all doubt regarding the PS5 Voice Chat.

Will Sony actively listen to your PS5 voice chat?

The short and clear answer - no.

Sony confirmed that there will be no active monitoring and listening of players' conversation neither on PS5 nor PS4.

The PS5 will only have a record of the last five minutes of chat, and only users can initiate the process of sending the audio to Sony.

Audio recordings of the last five minutes of the chat are stored locally on the consoles of people participating in voice chat and are deleted automatically after 5 minutes or after that voice chat session ends.

ps5_voice_chat_headseet
PS5 comes with the new Pulse 3D Wireless Headset (Picture: Sony)

How does PS5 voice chat harassment report works?

Once the PS5 is out, players will have an option to report any harassing messages recieved over VOIP with the audio file attached as proof.

Players will be able to select and send up to 40 seconds of voice chat, but only from the most recent 5 minutes of that chat since only that is being recorded.

The 40 second-long clip in their report will consist of 20 seconds of the conversation with the other (reported) player, plus an additional 10 seconds before and after the conversation selection.

Who can listen to and report audio files of my PS5 Voice Chat?

ps5_voice_chat_recording
(Picture: Sony)

These reports are submitted directly through the PS5 console, and only players who participate in voice chat with you can report audio files of that voice chat.

Files are stored locally and deleted immediately after the report goes through.

The reports will be sent to PlayStation's Consumer Experience team for moderation, who will then listen to the recording and, if needed, take action.

Can I opt-out and turn off this Voice Chat recording function on PS5?

Sony has stated that this won't be an option and you won't be able to turn it off.

Voice Chat recording is turned on by default and it stays like that always.

Everyone who participates in PS5 Voice Chat can be recorded with this new functionality.

Sony wants to reassure players that this is only for the sole purpose of their online security "because we want all users to feel safe when playing with others online, not just those who choose to enable it."

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