Details on new voice chat functionality coming to PS5

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Details on new voice chat functionality coming to PS5

A message from PlayStation’s Global Consumer Experience team.

Hi everyone. I’m Catherine Jensen, and I head up the Global Consumer Experience division here at PlayStation. Our department works every day to create the best possible gaming experience for our community on PlayStation Network. We also manage the @AskPlayStation customer support channel and create troubleshooting guides to help gamers find solutions. Our goal is to help foster a fun and positive experience when you’re playing online with friends and other gamers.

Managing online safety is an important part of ensuring that. We believe that it’s critical that gamers be able to quickly and accurately report abuse or harassment if they experience it while on PlayStation Network. As part of this initiative, we’ve been preparing to roll out a new feature on the PS5 console that enables gamers to report verbal harassment through a new Voice Chat reporting function. Its sole purpose is to help in reporting of inappropriate behavior, including actions that violate our Community Code of Conduct. Please note that this feature will not actively monitor or listen in on your conversations – ever – and it’s strictly reserved for reporting online abuse or harassment. 

PlayStation gamers learned about this new function in an unexpected way following the recent PS4 8.00 system update. We didn’t clearly communicate this feature or explain why we were introducing it, and we apologize for that. When the PS5 console launches in November, PS5 users will be able to chat with PS4 users — which is why we needed to include an advisory with the latest PS4 system update. 

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. 

Once the PS5 console launches, if a PS5 player needs to file a harassment report, 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.

Thanks for reading, and I’m hoping this gives you a better idea about our goals for this new function. We appreciate your support, and want you to know that our team will always work to create a positive experience on PlayStation so you can focus on playing great games and having fun with your friends.

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355 Comments

  • Hey, I understand that this is something that you clearly think needs to be on the PlayStation, but i’m not sure if its really that great of an idea. At least not the way you are currently planning on implementing it. I think that a feature like this would be best to only apply to children’s accounts who are under 18. There could be some sort of parental control that only lets them talk with other accounts that are categorized as under 18, and yes, i know that would make some adults make an “underage” account to join kids, but what is the difference. Creepy adults have been on the PlayStation systems since they came out, but now, those children can report the strange adults and maybe even other kids their age who are bullying them, and those of us who are above 18 can still have freedom in our parties. Also, one other thing about the new party system in this current update, it makes it much more difficult to get players to join your party as you first need to make a chat with them. This is a pain when playing games like destiny 2 or COD where you don’t want to use the game chat because it is very low quality. Thanks

  • This isn’t fair if someone is in a party talking to someone and they decide to talk junk to you THEN YOU can mute them or leave the party. Nobody is Obligated to listen to someone else mess.

  • I like this, but I think it would be illegal in Norway.

  • Microsoft has been recording people for a while now and banning them, I believe even as far back as the Xbox 360. I suppose it’s inevitable Sony would eventually catch up. All companies are becoming Orwellian and cracking down on free speech. They have abandoned the American principles of freedom and liberty, including the right to offend, in favor of the totalitarian globalist Marxist agenda followed by other Western countries such as Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, and the European Union, none of which value freedom of expression anymore.

    Sony is calling this new feature “Party Safety” as if words cause physical harm, but if someone says something you don’t like, you can already mute or block them. This is obviously an attempt to pander to the intolerant purple-haired pronoun crowd on Twitter—which is only a tiny but extremely loud minority of gamers—who go out of their way to be offended by innocuous things. The Snowflake Generation and the radical Left are busy chipping away at our freedoms one “Terms of Service” update at a time…

  • It’s called a mute button. The need to “report” people because someone is being mean is stupid. Mute or leave the party. If you’re hurt by words, you shouldn’t be playing with chat enabled. This nanny state nonsense is ridiculous.

  • I have 3 words for you “MOVING TO XBOX”

    • To be clear my comment is in regards to the inconvenience to create a party and the inability to just jump into my friends party’s at will. This is now a perfect time as the new consoles launch to look closely at Xbox with my dozens of friends.

    • Bye then and I am in no way being mean or rude, as you have made a decision about your future that has no consequences on anything /anyone else. For anything to have power you would need about 11 million people to also abandon ps5 and ps4

  • “We want all users to feel safe when playing with others online.”

    This is disgusting. I feel nothing but contempt and hatred for these nanny-state HR-type people who sweep in here with their Ess Jay Doubleyou agenda to take away our liberties and then use Orwellian language like “safety” to mean “not being offended.” People like that, who are offended by literally everything and who think words are “violence” should just go back to their campus safe space bubbles and leave normal people alone. We are sick and tired of being persecuted for thought crimes.

  • Sony, you messed up BIG time! If this is needed for ps5 parties, then you messed up the WHOLE thing! Change it back already!!!!

  • Every since this update my notifications look stupid now so many msg groups for what sht looks so messy got groups with 60 people in it people just add random a into this makes it really weird

  • So PlayStation is recording our conversations now. Can’t play a video game with out our privacy being infringed upon. That’s insane and there banning people for 30 days for swearing. I’m 30 I can swear if I want. PlayStation really messed with this one I’m smashing my PS4 and getting a Xbox. Privacy invading PlayStation. Wack !!!!

  • I’m fine with the recording functionality but I hate the new party system. Why do we have to be in a group chat and why can’t we kick people or un add them from the group chat. Please return the old party system!!!!!🙏🙏🙏

  • “Please note that this feature will not actively monitor or listen in on your conversations – ever –”

    Sorry but this is a lie. Just like the inclusion of a mic on the new controller, these tools were made for spying. Expect everything you say even if you’re playing single player games to be recorded.
    This new spying policy will affect people who don’t play multiplayer games as well.

  • Change parties back, NO ONE LIKES IT, whos ever idea it was is out of their mind, if it’s the same way on ps5 also i will be very disappointed, you see your customers complaining, and it’s not just a small few, so do something, don’t be so full of yourselves that you ignore us, don’t make us yell for months like you did with cross play, doing a mass spammy message to invite people is dumb, you took us back to the stone age

  • The first thing I’m gonna do on I’ll remove the mic from my controllers.

  • This is great and all but real harassment comes in game chat not party chat. All you managed to do was break the party chat system. This feature will be used in party chats for friends trolling other friends. “Say it again and I’m gonna report ya stupid self” (pg version) In term you basically just gave people another way to harass somebody.

  • This is worse security wise! Now you can not block players from entering your chat nor can you kick players. Huge safety infringement for minors as well as all gamers. Record and report option is fine but the fact privatizing the party is no longer an option is a mistake.

    • No one can enter with out being part of your message group and if they get added you know who did it was never your friend to set you up

  • Being competitive is great, but there’s never a need to harass other players, make racist comments, and be outright rude for any reason and put people down. It’s disrespectful to the community and to everyone who is just trying to have some fun after a long day. I love running into people online and having a laugh and joking around. We all just need to chill out and respect each other. If this change to voice will help stop the people who get away with this then that’s the way it should be. Thanks PlayStation! I’m looking forward to Launch Day!

  • This is terrible solution to a problem that does not exist. Why is this even happening?

    • It is basic cover my butt from lawsuits that little timmy heard a bad word or was asked send a photo of their junk in return for 50k vbucks

    • Yasink i guess little Timmy can’t think for himself or his parents didn’t teach how to just leave give me a break. You leave and report the player It’s the simple. Sooner or later when Sony sees more reports on someone they investigate.

  • I don’t get it, is this private party chat or chat in game?

  • I don’t like the concept of my voice possibly taken out of context cause I’m saying something let alone it being recorded by others when for 7 years i had the option to not allow others to record my voice.
    I also wish u would change back parties to how they were before. I don’t want messages and parties linked as they’re not the same. I don’t want to make new PS4 groups just cause I want to have a party with a few new people. Overall this party update is unneeded and as the community has shown, unwanted. If u keep it like this its going to annoy people as its already annoying me with how tedious it is to make a party even if its just for me so my Mic isn’t being used ingame

  • I hate how everyone is going on and on about PlayStation partys being recorded, and how that ps4 parties were broken. If you are reading this, PlayStation cannot record party chats themselves only other players can record and report the contents spoken in the party chat, and sometimes when developing and updating firmware for consoles there are bugs that might not have been found before launch and will be fixed ASAP :)

  • If someone can’t say “shut up” in a ps message, what makes you think anyone wants to socialize with someone they don’t already know in a party now. You deserve every last bit of backlash you get. Can’t make private parties, can’t chat with randoms without fear of repercussions because everyone gets offended by everything in 2020. The difference between going on like facebook and going into a ps party is you can play games with friends, be online, do everything you want except be in that party if you don’t like what you hear in it. If you’re on facebook and you’re seeing a bunch of things you don’t like, you can try but most likely the best thing to do would be to delete the app. So I can’t make a private chat with my friends, but now it’s my problem someone who wasn’t supposed to join in the first place did, and doesn’t like what I said, then I get banned. Pc is lookin good.

    • They would have to be messaged to enter your chat and its not just you say hi and its a chat party you still need to join it and you can click leave group chat if it is someone you do not know

  • This is great and all, but why did you have to completely ruin a perfectly good party and invite system? You guys made it so incredibly difficult to make a party compared to the last system. Please change it back. I can damn near guarantee people will switch to XBOX because of this.

  • Except people who are the wrongdoers are going to use this system to provoke and entrap people and also provide tons of fake reports because they play drunk or drugged or are trolls.

    You don’t oppress 100% of a population to solve problems for less than 5% (guess and that is likely a high guess) when no physical or human rights dangers are present… this recording system literally helps no one and should be planned in a better way where it only applies to minors and their parent accounts…

  • This isnt so bad but i mean theres bound to be bullying harassment and just things that are not okay so i mean this is gonna make a lot of people feel like they’re going to get in trouble for saying stuff they wouldn’t say if they were not the game. So i guess yall should try to be understanding people are, lets just say, not nice 24/7. And the punishments should only be temporary party/chat prohibiting and its really crazy then permanece may be necessary. Or to be online.

  • Just like the world today people are surrendering their right to privacy in the name of “Safety & Security” its a long way down the rabbit hole from here!

    Yes i know Sony isn’t listening we’ll have to trust them on that (Because big corporate companies haven’t be caught before recording and spying on their customers) but giving people an option to record and report private conversations is a slippery slope and just because we have surrender/lost those rights elsewhere doesn’t mean we should continue to do so.

    Yes anyone can record your voice before but there wasn’t a way to send those private voice chats to Sony or for Sony to take action on them.

    The real worry here is people abusing the system to get others in trouble for minor infractions taken out of context then there’s the mistrust issues that could be caused by this.

    Example:

    You’re in a group of people you trust and the next day you find one of those in that group reported you for swearing at a game you were playing nothing bad just minor swear words.

    Now you’re suspended for 7 days and you don’t know which of those friends betrayed you so now you mistrust them all and lose those friendships!

    The only person who doesn’t lose out in this situation is the person who reported his “friend”.

    You may say that Sony wont take actions on such minor infractions but nobody knows this and injustices and mistakes happen all the time.

    If you’re in a party with people you shouldn’t have to worry about weather the people you’re talking too can be trusted to not abuse the system to get you in trouble just because you may have slipped up and swore at a game.

    If you don’t like something people are saying then just mute/block them or leave the party! If those people are nasty individuals that use racism or such stuff they’ll likely get caught out and banned anyway because scum like that cannot keep their mouths shut.

    “Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.”

    Benjamin Franklin

  • What consequences are there for those that abuse the system and false report?

  • Can we have a walled off area with the kids and sensitive people on one side, and the adults can play without mommy Sony “protecting” us?

    • This! If people are seriously so sensitive that having to use the mute button themselves is too traumatic, then they shouldn’t join voice chat.

      Yes, here’s a great idea: Let’s make the majority of people suffer to protect a tiny minority of people who need the entire world to be an echo chamber where no one ever has differing views or opinions from their own.

  • Yasink appears to be your biggest supporter of these new changes.

    Yet, his tons of comments with broken sentences and repeated statements, some of which are impossible to understand, have directly offended me. Should I report him? Probably not. I’ve had my psnid since ps2 online in probably 2003 or 4. Policing *PRIVATE* chat parties has nothing to do with making anything safer for anyone. This should be handled in a way to address in game chat, *PUBLIC* ps party chat, or only apply to minors and their parent accounts.

    • Agreed, “private” should be left alone. Moderate in game chats and leave it at that.

      If you dont like whats said in a private party then leave lol.

  • I can’t wait for all the reports from people who are over sensitive that are just reporting everyone and you make a policy that people cant play until issue is investigated. If some one cant just mute someone else they shouldnt be online.

  • Just fix the way the mute funtion works my freinds were talking about a program I have not seen and I said just mute me untill your finished so they bid and I could hear every word they said.

  • So its no longer a “PRIVATE PARTY”, where what you say and who you speak to may be PRIVATE.

    I understand moderating in-game chats, but leave the damn private stuff private. Dumbest change so far!

  • No no and no u guys didn’t check the laws as a pan player since ps1 I don’t agree with it as a veteran I deff don’t agree it’s a violation of our rights here in the us an 2nd u have been called out by the community get rid of it I can’t even play my games since the update now they don’t load and u still haven’t fixed it why am I paying for plus when I can’t use it let alone watch my stream services I suggest u fix this issue cause u owe me a week of plus as it is next step I’m filing a tort claim and writ of habeas corpus against your company for violations of my constitutional and other citizens of the United States constitutional rights you cannot record us without our permission I can test your recordings in public and private chats you should keep your parties the way that they were to begin with which was easier for people to maneuver if you want a private chat and you only want certain people in your chat then you make it private you can’t even kick somebody out of the new chat so if you’ve got somebody in the new the whole new chat feature you can’t kick them out you just got to sit there and deal with them or start a new chat with your friends to get rid of said person so how is that fair to the community you have broken the network you’re going to end up being sued by the customers of this network because a lot of us can’t even play our content right now because you broke the network you broke our consoles I don’t know why I have a PlayStation 4 pro now I can’t even use it it’s a paperweight looks like I’m going to Xbox if you do not fix this issue so there’s my money that you’re not getting for my games my at least $2,000 a year on my entertainment for my video gaming so that’s one person so with the over million people that are already complaining on your forums and on your blogs about removing this you have enough people that are talking about moving back to Xbox to really kill your platform so much for PlayStation being the number one entertainment provider right I think it’s time for you guys to take a step back and go back to honoring the people’s rights what are you and Donald Trump’s pocket

  • Change it back! Why would you “fix” something that isn’t broken. If this operates how the new UI for the ps5 will operate, I think I will be switching to Xbox. Unbelievable.

  • A PRIVATE party as the name says is PRIVATE, which means nobody on the earth have any right to listen in or moderate it. PRIVATE messages is never under moderation in any forum on the world. It’s like a Viber or Skype group call with my friends, do you understand SONY?!?

  • This is sad that PlayStation is sitting there trying to moderate speech. Because who are they to say what’s “offensive” or what is “appropriate”. I don’t think Sony would like the US government to moderate what they say and ban them for saying something they don’t agree with.

  • What I’d like to know, if already answer please direct me to the answer, is will I be able to create a private party on PS5 without having to attach it to a message thread or even without having to send out an invite at all. I like the ability to do so and invite people in on the fly. Also if I create a party tied to a message group will someone on my friends list that comes online later be able to see and join said party without an invite or having to be added to the message group?

  • The integration of messaging and the existing party chat feature has created an unnecessarily complex system from something that was very simple. The resulting experience has left me feeling less social and feels counterintuitive to the goals and expectations of a next-gen evolution.

  • Sony.. I think you should have an under age chat mode with recording but adults likes to talk crap when it’s competitive gaming and that’s the fun of that.

    Create 3 different chat mode

    Kids chat mode
    Clean adult chat mode
    Wild dirty chat mode

    I’m also offended that you offended Japanese Nihonjing gamers about the X/O .
    X is no and O is oh… yes. Stop going against the universal sign.

    Make a setting option for us gamers to swap buttons .

    Stop shopping bots and preorder and dump all PS5 to all stores for us to camp for fun .
    Thank you.

  • Sony is protected with their tos to record us. Sony cannot protect the player that records others though. This is a lawsuit. Not only can the player that recorded another be sued but so will Sony because they provided the product to do so. This is no different than gun makers being sued for people using their products against other people. The companies may not be the ones actually doing it but just by giving people the means to do this makes them just as liable.

  • This sounds like something teenage girls were crying about and they introduced on behalf of people who hardly play games. Total mistake.

    • IDK if this is true, but apparently some kid killed himself over being bullied in a PSN party. But it’s like, you can just easily leave the party if you feel like you’re being harassed. No need to change a system that already worked

  • This function to me seems like a violation of my privacy. Being able to record others without they’re permission is illegal.

    • you agree to it by using a playstation. read the tos and eula next time

    • So grumpy if majority of users use the automatic update option. We don’t even get a chance to read it. We don’t expect a company like Sony to do something like this that does violate our privacy. A big update like this should have bypassed The auto update and highlighted this big change for us to read.

  • PlayStation’s Global Consumer xXxxxxxxxx team

  • This is garbage, and honestly enough for me to just opt out of buying a PS5 entirely. I am so sick of censorship and the ridiculously subjective blanket term of calling any opinion you disagree with “hate speech”.

    This policy is a disaster, and I say that as a member of the racial minority.

  • IF YALL HAVE THE PS5 LIKE THE MOST RECENT PS4 UPDATE IK SWITCHING TO XBOX

  • Hope you will support IPV6 this time with PS5.

  • I agree with you completely. Sony was humbled in the PS3 generation, but since the success of the PS4, all I see is the company becoming proud and doing whatever they want, instead of listening to what their customers actually want. This has been the generation of censorship and american rules and scrutiny for devs in different markets, the “our customers won’t get cross-console gameplay because PS4 is the best place to play”, the “our customers don’t want EA Access because it doesn’t provide value”, the ignored and neglected PS2-on-PS4 effort, and so on…

    Meanwhile Microsoft has lost so frequently that they’ve completely revamped themselves this generation: the best subscription service in GamePass, the best rewards program, the most powerful console for sale, the least expensive console for sale (at the same time!), the most first party studios, backwards compatibility, assistive technologies…

    Microsoft has been building customer satisfaction and value, while Sony keeps losing goodwill and has a really long hill to climb to regain it.

  • For the first time ever, I’m considering dropping PlayStation and changing consoles. I’ve been a loyal Sony fan since the very first release in 1994 when I was a kid. My friends and I talk crap to each other all the time and we should be able to do that without fear of consequence. From time to time, some random person finds their way into our party chat. Some leave immediately and some yell obscenities before leaving but we don’t care. We just enjoy ourselves. Now we have to worry about people reporting things, not because we do anything wrong, but just for their kicks and giggles. Business idea: maybe build a chat system where people don’t have to be recorded and can enjoy gameplay and chat with family and friends privately.

  • This is cool and all, and you can leave the dumb recording stuff that’s useless because people usually only party chat with friends so it will never be used

    But PUT PARTIES BACK TO HOW THEY WERE, if ps5 parties are like this, i will legit return it and get a refund

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