Roblox has been extremely popular in recent years, but it is not immune to trolls. One troll in particular has gone so far with his antics that Roblox has filed a lawsuit against him for allegedly making false terrorist threats that nearly shut down this year’s Roblox Developer Conference.
According to Polygon, the lawsuit says that Benjamin Robert Simon, aka RubenSim, and his “cybermob” made false terrorist threats, forcing Roblox to halt its convention while police and security checked the location. Simon allegedly threatened Roblox with a shooting similar to the one that occurred at YouTube’s headquarters in 2018, among other things. According to the company, investigating all of the threats cost $50,000. A request for response from Simon has yet to be answered.
Simon has had a lengthy relationship with Roblox. He’s been kicked out of the game several times for various forms of harassment. On Nov. 23, Roblox lawyers filed a lawsuit against Simon, alleging that he sexually harassed game users, used racist and homophobic slurs, and uploaded images of Adolf Hitler. All of these accusations are in violation of Roblox’s Community Standards. According to the lawsuit, Simon has allegedly used the consequences of his hate-based behavior to farm views and monetize his YouTube and Patreon accounts.
Simon’s most recent video is from a month ago, according to his YouTube channel, which is still active, verified, and has nearly 800,000 subscribers. Simon’s YouTube channel is known for breaking Roblox rules. He brags about getting around bans, revealing how he got over a MAC address ban by “using voice chat on a borrowed account” in one video description.
Simon’s channel appears to encourage breaking rules at times, with corporate sponsors offering services to aid his attempts. Simon reveals in “Sneaking Chinese Roblox Users Over the Firewall” that viewers continuously provide him with fresh Roblox accounts, allowing him to continue playing despite his bans. Simon received a sponsored sponsor in the form of Dashlane, a password management program, to assist him in managing all of his new accounts’ passwords. A request for comment from Dashlane has yet to be answered.
Simon’s alleged threats and harassment are a form of “hate-farming” for views, similar to Twitch’s recent rush of hate raids and other hate-based “content” creation. In addition to hate raids, some harassers livestream themselves, criticizing other people’s streams with slurs for a stream-within-a-stream experience. Women and LGBTQ people are frequently the victims. Twitch announced in September that it was suing two anonymous persons for the platform’s hate raid problem. WIRED journalist Cecilia D’Anastasio recently said that Roblox has become “a playground for virtual fascists.” Now, the corporation looks to be retaliating, beginning with RubenSim, in an effort to counteract the rising bad behavior surrounding its flagship title.