SMULE- A Well For Croaking Frogs

I didn't know about the Smule app (it is a karaoke cum social app) until YouTube showed me an ad for it which is when I subscribed to the app as a free user. However, as a free user, you can only sing with someone else, you cannot sing solo songs. So, every time you want to sing a particular song, you have to search if someone has sung it and if there is an open invite from the host for you to be able to join him/her. These invitations are valid for 7 days. Therefore, after being a free user for about two months, I paid $45 and signed up for their annual VIP subscription. That was the starting point of trouble for me.

Smule can keep you from living your real life if you let it. The platform is noisy and to remain relevant, you have to make some noise. I remember when I first joined the app, I got pretty addicted and spent hours on it every single day. I stayed up all night replying to the comments and listening to the collabs/joins. This app was taking control of my life. My prioritization in life had taken a back seat. I had uninstalled the app. However, I found myself logging in on the Smule desktop version.

Socializing is another dangerous side of Smule which depends on the kind of people you come across. A friend of mine, fell head over heels in love with a Smule user and ended up with a broken heart. I know of many users who have gotten emotionally involved and end up hurt or screwed over or completely fooled on Smule. This is not Smule's fault. It is the fault of some mentally sick people who think they can practice all sorts of nonsense on this app. 

Therefore, today I am going to share my insights and experiences with this app, tell about the possible dangers of Smule, and talk about how you can shield yourself from such risks. 

PART 1: Games

The follow-unfollow game: 

This is something very strange and funny that I encounter every week on Smule. Suddenly a lot of people start following me closer to the weekend and then by midweek my number of followers go down drastically. This happens because Smule only notifies you when someone follows you. It does not tell you when they unfollow you. So, at first people follow you to get your attention and hope that you will follow them back. Then after a few days, they will unfollow you thereby maintaining their number of followers. You will find a lot of YouTube videos on this, where people suggest you to play this follow-unfollow game to increase your followers.

Solution: I don't think Smule followers are worth anything. It has nothing to do with the quality of singing. There are many average singers with 250k+ followers. In contrast to this, there are also many exceptional singers with barely any followers. Please note that I am not judging anybody's singing here because Smule is a karaoke app, so you shouldn't expect all users to sing like Lata Mangeshkar or Lady Gaga. Secondly, you won't achieve anything by playing the follow-unfollow game because other users are playing the same game with you. Another thing that I noticed is that even if you have 250k followers, it is always those 15-20 followers who will join you regularly. I have started to unfollow those 'so-called verified users'. It is useless following them. Instead I have started to follow people who are passionate about singing and have somewhat of a good voice. (In one of my future posts I will write on how you can organically increase your followers on Smule.)

The rat race game: 

Your popularity is judged by the number of followers you have.  So, every one who joins Smule, ultimately wants followers. However, there is barely any room for the newcomers. Smule algorithms will only suggest users that have more number of followers. So, it is always these top/verified users who will continue growing their followers. If one had to judge on the basis of the quality of singing- There are users who have joined Smule around the same date, where one is a far better singer than the other. But 4 years down the line, the one who is not a very good singer has 200x followers than the one who sings well. People who have joined the app in the beginning i.e. when the app was launched in India, have had an advantage of many people following them. This is because not too many people had joined Smule at that time. The app wasn't very popular in India. In the past 3-4 months so many people have joined Smule due to the lockdown. As a result, the bottom of the pyramid is very heavy with no scope to climb to the top. 

The ass-licking game: 

Constructive feedback is one thing and thanking someone for singing along is another. But most Smule users are an expert on flattering. You will be tired of reading the ass-licking and cheesy lies on Smule followed by annoying emojis. For example:

You are sounding like cuckoo bird.. Kitna pyaara gaaya🌹🌹🌹❤️❤️❤️πŸ‘ŒπŸ‘ŒπŸ‘ŒπŸ˜πŸ˜πŸ₯°πŸ₯°♥️♥️

Aalaaap and landing notes are more precise and expressions were too cute.. N husky texture πŸŒΉπŸŒΉπŸ˜πŸ˜πŸ‘ŒπŸ‘ŒπŸ₯°

Overlapps were so perfectly synced..Magical voice u have..Like breeze flowing over sea..πŸŒΉπŸŒΉπŸŒΉπŸ‘ŒπŸ‘Œ

waah smooth as silk.. Awesome awesome join.. Beautifully rendered ♥️♥️πŸ₯°πŸ₯°❤️❤️πŸ‘ŒπŸ‘ŒπŸ€—πŸ€—

For some joiners it is a real honor if the host favorites or pins their song. However, the comments have nothing to do with whether or not the host favorites or pins a song. The selections are based on the how closely the host knows the joiner, for how many years they have been singing together, are they their regular joiners, or are they the ones sending nude photos and doing nude video calls with them or are potential candidates for sending nudes. Most of the comments are repetitive which makes me think that the hosts maintain a list of comments that they keep copying and pasting. Some users get 700-1000 joins on one song. I doubt if they even listen to every song.

Solution: Do you really want to be a part of this game? Ask yourself.

PART 2: Users

Karaoke mafia: 

All these suggested users have a partner with whom they sing maximum songs. They call them 'bestu', 'sistu', 'betu', 'golu', 'senorita', etc. I don't know what sort of partners are they- f***buddies, or friends with benefits or friends who send nudes? These users also have a group of friends who sing with each other and support each other. I was once bullied by one such gang. A teenage girl joined me for a song. She tagged her idol (who is a very popular Smule user) on her song along with this comment, "Di please hear this Didi's song. She sings better than you." The next day, that song was deleted. I know six people from this gang who unfollowed me and blocked me that day. SmuleIndiaBlog official account unfollowed me. I have no idea what happened- professional rivalry? Why? I mean who the hell are you? I googled you and hello, nobody knows you outside of Smule! Just like I am a nobody. 

Solution: Be TEFLON. Just don't care about who sings with you or who deletes your songs or who calls you by what name. These relations are not real. Half the people haven't even met each other in real life. Also, don't try to investigate, it will only stress you more.

Attention seekers: 

Some singers boast being 'trained in music', 'professional music director/ singer', won some 'loser' contest, got featured on some 'nobody knows' webpage, etc. only to get your attention. These have no connection to their quality of singing and will not work to your advantage (if you are looking for any).

Solution: Please don't fall for these gimmicks. Join the song, not the singer. Sing for yourself and not to impress the host. Everybody on the app are busy with themselves. The only one who cares about you is YOU.

Groups and chat rooms: 

These communities are of the losers, by the losers, and for the losers. Any lame person can open a group. The group admins act like Gods and gatekeepers of heaven. Some of them ask for money for featuring you or letting you open an invite from their group's page. Getting featured is supposed to be some kind of privilege or honor for these losers. One such admin asked me to gift him an iPhone in return for pinning my song on top of his group page. Some of these groups will let you join in for free while some are by invitation only. Some also conduct auditions and contests for selecting members. They operate like cult groups with strict rules and regulations that every member has to follow. For example, every member has to like every fellow member's song before 11:59 pm on the same day, you have to include the group's name on your profile ID and under mentions and you have to sing birthday songs for your fellow members on their birthdays, just like an idiot. 

These groups have chat rooms where people chat the whole day as if they know each other since childhood. They bitch, gossip, praise, just like the women in kitty party groups. The more you socialite on these chat rooms, the more your songs will get featured on the group's page. Some of these groups also chat outside the Smule apps on Line or Whats app. I would imagine that they do that so they can talk dirty or do things outside the Smule peripheral, without violating the Smule rules. I was once a part of such a group. At that time, I was new to Smule and I had no idea what it was. But as soon as I realized how useless it is, I left the group.

Solution: If you are a follower hungry person or want to get attention, then groups are the best place for you. If not, then please do not waste your time on these. Another thing that you could do is, follow (not join) groups that do not have any rules.

Smule communities: 

There are these so-called official Smule communities who regularly feature the crΓ¨me de la crΓ¨me Smule users on their social media sites. There is typically a long line and a long wait for getting featured. There is no room for new singers unless you are buddies with the founders or managers of these communities, then you might get featured sooner and more frequently. Even the official Smule India page features their verified users who have 75k+ followers. Again, quality of singing don't matter, number of followers does.

Solution: Getting featured on these websites or blogs doesn't matter as they barely have any followers. Most of them are not even official Smule communities. I have been featured multiple times on one of these. Later, I realized that it is some self-proclaimed, fake Smule community. The feature did not get me any additional followers on Smule or social media. So, don't waste your time on them.

PART 3: Sex

Sex offenders and online predators: 

This app also makes the online environment a danger zone given the number of strangers the users meet. Predators can easily lure on the pretext of love while waiting for something in return. As somebody never dealt with something like this before you may never know the motives of such people until when the damage is already done. You may accidentally get indulged in sexual activities like sexting or exchange nude photos and doing nude video calls. It's natural to fall in love especially if you are mostly singing romantic Bollywood songs. It all starts with falling in love with the voice and then you slowly start loving the person behind that voice. But beware of sex offenders. It is impossible to differentiate between someone who truly loves you versus someone who is using you. By the time you realize this, the damage is already done. 

Solution: I would suggest that you stay away from trusting strangers online when it comes to the matter of heart and money. Do not make any social contacts with anyone. Keep it strictly professional. Do not chat with strangers on topics other than music. Do not share your personal information such as your real name, your address, social media profiles, credit card number, bank account details, etc. with anyone on Smule. I have done this mistake and learned from it. Remember, nobody is a friend on Smule. When my friend was away from the app for over three month, nobody reached out to her asking why she wasn't singing. People only join you for a song, they don't remember you as a person. Moreover, my followers went down drastically (not that I care) while I was away.

Sex shows: 

Some users promote sexuality and have nearly-naked video recordings on the app. Live streams can convert in to live sex chat rooms. Most people are not prepared for what is next and seeing live stream explicit content from strangers only worsens every bit of this app's purpose. 


One of my songs had received over 50 joins. For me, it was not possible to reply to every join, so I sent a generic comment to all the joiners. In no time, I started receiving so many bully messages asking me to reply or hear their songs, etc. It looks like sending one message to thank all the joiners is not the answer as these psychos expect the sender of invites to respond with personalized comments. They will also continuously harass you by asking you to join their invites. It's like a return favor- since they have joined you, you have to join them back now. Also, from the day I put my video recording, some perverts are passing sexual comments at me. 

Solution: I saw one popular singer write this message on every invite: Please sing for yourself and not for me. I am already impressed with each one of you. This person never replies to any of his joiners or sends them any gifts or likes their songs. He doesn't have any video recording or any photo of his on profile. Yet, he has over 150k followers, and its only growing. I have recently made all my video recordings private and have removed my photo from the profile page. Once I start singing again, I will write something similar on my profile page. Let's see what happens. 

How to enjoy the app without getting screwed?

To be careful on such apps is basic. Even if there are a few traps, I don't think Smule is that bad for most people as long as you are fully aware of what you might get in to and how you can save yourself. I believe that the good outweighs the bad - big time! 

Yes, there may be a chance you get addicted. But take intermittent breaks by uninstalling the app for a few days/weeks, put app limit time on it and that should help you to not get addicted. As far as socializing is concerned, by not interacting with anyone at all, you'll miss out on meeting some great people out there. Just limit your conversation and keep it strictly professional and you should be good. Do not take your conversations outside the Smule app chat unless you are completely convinced that the person is not a sex offender. Which means, do not disclose your legal name, address, mobile or What's App number, Line ID, Instagram or Facebook ID's to any Smule user.

Smule shows different subscription fees on different devices. So, make sure you browse through multiple devices before making the final payment. Likewise, the internet is full of scammers offering free or discounted Smule. Avoid them. Buy the VIP subscription directly from the app store or Smule official website. Also, I would like to make this very clear that I am not against Smule. I am against those people who have ruined the app's purpose and environment.








Disclaimer: The Smule app lets you record as well as upload the karaoke versions of your favorite hits. The opinions shared on this post are based on my interaction and experience with the Smule app and the first-hand experiences of 50+ users who have shared their stories with me. I have also gone through over 200 Smule user profiles (with 2500+ followers that roughly translates to 1000 comments) to understand what comment etiquettes they follow.