Game and social platform Roblox has sued a YouTube creator it banned from the platform over harassment and sexual content, saying he amassed a “mob” that temporarily shut down its October developers conference. The Roblox Corporation filed a complaint against Benjamin Robert Simon, also known as Ruben Sim, for breaching its user contract and violating anti-hacking laws. “Defendant Simon is the leader of a ‘cybermob’ that with malice, fraud, and oppression, commits and encourages unlawful acts designed to injure Roblox and its users,” the suit claims, seeking $1.65 million in damages.
Polygon initially reported the existence of the California lawsuit this morning. In it, Roblox says it banned Simon for attempting to upload a near-nude picture of himself, images of Adolf Hitler, and a “sex game” that’s forbidden on the kid-focused platform. Simon also allegedly harassed other members of the platform, used racial and homophobic slurs, and impersonated Roblox employees online, among other behavior.
After the ban, the suit says he continued accessing Roblox using fake accounts, evading bans on his hardware and IP addresses and encouraging his roughly 760,000 YouTube followers to do the same. (Roblox refers to this as “hacking into” the platform.)
The worst damage allegedly came during the Roblox Developers Conference in October of 2021. In the leadup to the conference, the suit says Simon “engaged his followers on Discord, glamorizing the April 3, 2018 active shooter and murder at YouTube headquarters in San Bruno, California, and threatening / taunting a copycat act of terrorism at Roblox headquarters,” telling followers to “wait until [someone] does it to Roblox.” Then, during the conference, he tweeted that local police were searching for a fictitious “notorious Islamic Extremist” and that the extremist had posted a video titled “Someone Blow Up Roblox Now!” Meanwhile, his followers allegedly posted false active shooting threats and claimed to have poisoned the conference’s drinks.
Roblox says the conference was temporarily locked down while police and private security searched the facility, and it incurred $50,000 in expenses securing the event and investigating the incident. It alleges that Simon committed fraud by falsely representing the existence of a terrorist threat and trying to scare users away from the event.