Xbox One players will soon be able to automatically filter out offensive chat messages.
Microsoft is rolling out a new text-based filtration system for Xbox Live – today for Xbox Insiders, then later this fall for the wider Xbox audience – and it'll grant control over what kind of language and content comes your way. If a message is deemed offensive, it'll be obscured, but there's leeway.
The filters operate on a spectrum: Friendly, Medium, Mature, and Unfiltered.
In other words, if you're fine having a dumpster fire of an inbox, by all means. If you don't want to put up with any bullshit while you play games, you'll have that choice too. As an example, the Medium filter "allows for some vulgar words while still limiting harsher vulgarities and phrases identified as bullying."
It's up to you what you're comfortable with, and crucially, you can tell the system to differentiate between conversations with your friends and messages with randos. It's not all or nothing.
Microsoft also strives to allow for certain "words or phrases commonly used to refer to gameplay" that could be misconstrued without context. Machine learning is a hell of a thing. Once the update is live, you can adjust your chat filters by going to Settings > General > Online safety & family > Message safety.
"These new automated text filtration capabilities will start rolling out across the Xbox ecosystem soon, starting first with private messages and expanding over time to profiles, LFG, Clubs, and your Activity Feed," the company said today in a news post. "Ultimately our vision is to supplement our existing efforts and leverage our company efforts in AI and machine learning technology to provide filtration across all types of content on Xbox Live, delivering control to each and every individual player."
It's encouraging to see Microsoft take user communication so seriously. Others could take notes.