Party Chat Recording Coming with PS4 Update


Anthony Abrahantes

The latest PS4 update includes changes in online communication capabilities that are designed to prevent cyberbullying from occurring on the platform.

Michael Evelyn, Staff Writer

Sony has recently released a new update for the Playstation 4 with the main goal of limiting voice harassment through their party chats. On Oct. 14, 2020, Sony introduced update version 8.00, which now allows players to record and send in party chats for review by Sony employees.

At first, many users were upset by this change, as they felt it was an infringement of their privacy. However, after clarification from Sony through a tweet, players started understanding that the company does not have the ability to record and listen to every party chat, but instead are limited to what players can now record and send if they feel someone is experiencing harassment.

For many years, console players had the ability to be open and vocal in party chats without fearing repercussions. While many saw this as a problem, players always had the ability to mute or block those who were offensive to others. Still, harassment managed to persist in the voice chats, leading to multiple instances of cyber bullying and harassment.

Upon hearing reports of this unfortunate reality, Sony decided to draw the line and gave players the ability to send in party chats for review. This change could lead to certain users being banned from communicating in these parties, which could ultimately lead to a safer environment for all players. Sony has also come out and said that players will be clearly notified if someone decides to start recording the party.

After hearing this, some players became more appreciative of Sony’s effort to create a safe gaming environment. On the other hand, players remained furious at the company due to fears that their chats would be constantly monitored.

Xbox, the competing console, has yet to release a statement on whether or not they will also implement this change. As for now, Xbox users still have access to unmonitored voice chats.

I do not mind the PS4 update because it is not Sony who decides to record your chat, it is someone in your chat that can record it and send it to them. It makes chatting much safer.

— junior Oliver Michel

The reason that many PS4 users are still upset about the new changes is that players were always given the option to mute or block others with ease. If a player was being harassed through party chat, they were able to silence said player and stop all forms of communication with them. This was what most players did when they were being bullied by other online users. The players who are still frustrated about this update do not see the need for the recordings when there had already been a widely used alternative to avoid voice chat conflicts for so long.

“I think this update sucks because now people might have their accounts banned for swearing in party charts which should not be acceptable. I think the correct thing to do would be to have certain party chats that have a PG option and then someone who swears or harasses people can be reported,” junior Isaac Zerdoun said.

While this new update will most likely prove beneficial in creating a safer playing environment, especially for younger players, it is still facing plenty of backlash. As PS4 users get accustomed to the new feature, it is also likely that some will find a way around this system in order to have conversations without being recorded. Overall, this update will hopefully prevent others from facing harassment or from causing harm to themselves or others due to online bullying.