Riot to Record Valorant Voice Chat to Fight Harassment
Here’s a bit of news no one saw coming: Riot Games plans to record Valorant in-game voice chat with the intention of moderating and cutting down on toxic behavior. Now, before we delve any deeper, it’s worth mentioning that we’re getting some serious Orwellian vibes from this one. We whole-heartedly support Riot’s (or anyone else’s) fight against toxicity — which is seemingly omnipresent in today’s most popular titles — but this might be taking things too far.
If you accept this policy change, Riot will be able to record all your in-game voice data and then, on the off-chance you’re reported, evaluate it internally to see if you’ve actually violated any rules. If you’re guilty, you’ll be punished accordingly and said data will be deleted. Riot has already been doing this with text-based chat reports for years, but it’s questionable whether the same method can be applied to voice chat as well.
A Matter of Choice
Fortunately, you’ll have the option to opt-out, but it’ll come at a cost: turning off voice chat entirely. There’s no other option at the time of this writing, for better or worse. This old saying comes to mind: “the path to hell is paved with good intentions.” Then again, voice chat in Valorant and Overwatch can definitely be a vile method of communication and a fertile ground for the most unadjusted individuals to vent and exude hate, so some kind of action needs to be taken. Whether this is the best possible route still remains to be seen, but kudos to Riot for actually taking proactive steps towards (potentially) solving the problem.
Interestingly enough, this policy applies to all Riot-developed titles, although it’ll only be employed in Valorant for the time being. Still, it’s safe to assume that — should it prove successful in curbing toxic behavior — it’ll be integrated into League of Legends as well.
Either way, Riot is setting a precedent here, and they deserve respect for going the extra mile on this one. We hope other developers will eventually follow suit as well.