Overwatch 2 Records Your Voice, but Not for the Reasons You Think

Are voice recordings in Overwatch 2 actually a good thing?

If you’ve been following the rocky Overwatch 2 launch, you probably remember at some point there being threads and posts about Blizzard and Overwatch 2 recording your voice. Yes–privacy concerns, especially in 2022, are a real thing. Our data is sacred, and more than ever, people are aware of potential violations of privacy. 

In the recent Overwatch 2 Patch for November 17, 2022, Blizzard clarified some things to the player base about voice chat. The skinny of it is Overwatch 2 does indeed record your voice. But it’s not to collect your entire personality in a giant server or sell to advertisers.

Are Voice Recordings a Good Thing?

According to Blizzard, the reason behind temporary voice recordings may be a good thing and can reduce toxicity in the game. Under the “Defense Matrix” portion of the update, the company goes on to state, 

“…audio transcriptions allow us to analyze a transcript from a temporary voice chat recording of a reported player.”

The patch notes go on to say, 

“Once reported, a temporary audio recording will be used to make a text file transcript through speech-to-text programs. No one listens to the temporary audio recording, which is quickly deleted after being transcribed. Transcriptions are only made for reports of disruptive behavior in public voice channels, which includes team and match chat—group “party” chat is excluded.”

So, according to the company, the recordings won’t be used in any other way than to cut down on toxic behavior. Being able to process text rather than manually listening to recordings will enable Blizzard to ban offending players quicker. 

Skepticism is a Good Thing

A bit of skepticism keeps developers honest–and pushback from the community can result in action. While conspiracy theories are never helpful, it’s good to realize that corporations don’t always have our best interests at heart. 

Regardless of where you stand on the voice recording feature in Overwatch 2, you can always turn off voice as an option. 

You can read the full developer blog here.

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