Home Roblox boss denies it profits from child exploitation, calls it “a gift”

Roblox boss denies it profits from child exploitation, calls it “a gift”


  • Roblox is widely popular among children globally..
  • However, it faces criticism for exploiting user labor and maintaining unfavorable Robux exchange rates.
  • Recent statements by Roblox executives have raised concerns about child exploitation and platform policies.

Roblox is a global phenomenon, hugely popular with kids of all ages. It’s a platform where users can use the Roblox Studio to create games and upload them for other players to either play for free or purchase. It’s so popular that popstar Nicki Minaj used it to promote her latest album.

However, Roblox has a reputation for taking the labor of its audience and using it to make staggering profits (and $3bn in revenue) by making the exchange rate between Robux and real money extremely unfavorable. The YouTube channel People Make Games (PMG) highlighted this in an investigation in 2021 that showed the unsavory side of Roblox.

Recent statements by Roblox

The company’s CEO David Baszucki recently told The Verge that “Obviously everyone wants to keep kids safe,” but doubt will certainly be cast on their intentions after a conversation between Roblox Studio head Stefano Corazza and Eurogamer at GDC.

In response to a question about the exploitative nature of its operations, Corazza said he didn’t see it as exploitation. He emphasized the potential for earning and the fact that people can use Roblox to learn to code”

” I don’t know, you can say this for a lot of things, right? Like, you can say, ‘Okay, we are exploiting, you know, child labor,’ right? Or, you can say: we are offering people anywhere in the world the capability to get a job, and even like an income. So, I can be like 15 years old, in Indonesia, living in a slum, and then now, with just a laptop, I can create something, make money, and then sustain my life.

“There’s always the flip side of that, when you go broad and democratised – and in this case, also with a younger audience,” he continued. “I mean, our average game developer is in their 20s. But of course, there’s people that are teenagers – and we have hired some teenagers that had millions of players on the platform.

“For them, you know, hearing from their experience, they didn’t feel like they were exploited! They felt like, ‘Oh my god, this was the biggest gift, all of a sudden I could create something, I had millions of users, I made so much money I could retire.’ So I focus more on the amount of money that we distribute every year to creators, which is now getting close to like a billion dollars, which is phenomenal.”

These statements, when contrasted with what PMG found in their investigation, and the exchange rate between Robux and dollars (1000 Robux cashes out at $3.50 but costs $12.50 to purchase) have raised doubts that Roblox truly understands the nature or scope of the concerns some have about child exploitation.

As Baszucki begins to meet with lawmakers and legislators in Washington to discuss child safety, it remains to be seen what changes will come to the platform and how its creators are compensated, if any. Until then, there is no war in Ba Sing Se.

Featured image credit: Roblox

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Ali Rees
Tech journalist

Ali Rees is a freelance writer based in the UK. They have worked as a data and analytics consultant, a software tester, and a digital marketing and SEO specialist. They have been a keen gamer and tech enthusiast since their childhood in are currently the Gaming and Tech editor at Brig Newspaper. They also have a Substack where they review short video games. During the pandemic, Ali turned their hand to live streaming and is a fan of Twitch. When not writing, Ali enjoys playing video and board games, live music, and reading. They have two cats and both of…

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