Remember those Facebook and Twitter capabilities that would be available on Xbox Live for Christmas? One paragraph from a Microsoft's Xbox price-cut announcement this morning stirred up headlines by implying that Facebook and Twitter integration for Xbox Live users would only be open to Gold members. An official statement from Microsoft, however, appears to have back-peddled from that claim and leaves a morsel of hope for non-paying players on XBL.
That information is "incorrect" and the company is "is still formulating its plans" for Facebook and Twitter integration, according to Microsoft spokesperson contacted by MCV. Some wires must have been crossed between offices at some point before today's announcement went out.
"Xbox LIVE Gold Membership will be required for Twitter and Facebook when they are available, and is required for Netflix. Games, media content and Netflix membership are sold separately; a hard drive is required for storage," the original press release from Microsoft read.
With other Xbox Live applications, such as Netflix streaming capability, requiring paid memberships, the idea of lumping Twitter and Facebook features behind the Gold account gates wasn't a major shocker. However, given the potential benefits to the universal XBL experience that they could provide, leaving non-subcribers in the dust with comparatively crippled avatar functionality might generate some ill will. Finding out which road Microsoft takes will have to wait for another day.
How would you feel if Microsoft requires Gold membership for Twitter and Facebook features on XBL? What do you hope to be able to do with them when they become available? Sound off in the comment section below.