Sabah’s Youtube Star: Adam Shamil

Adam Shamil

Adam Shamil – the famous Sabahan YouTuber who took the world by storm in less than a year. Recognised for his wacky sense of humour, Adam shot to fame when he uploaded his first YouTube video “Get It Right”. Since then, Adam has garnered more than 200,000 followers and 8 million total views on social media and a growing number of 30,000 subscribers on YouTube. 


5 Interesting Facts about Adam Shamil

  1. I love to sing
  2. My grandmother is my best friend
  3. Currently, I am a one-man show
  4. I don’t like the term “Fan”. If you’re a fan, welcome aboard #TEAMGILAPA (Please refer to “Get it Right: Episode 2). 
  5. I was the first Malaysian to step into YouTube headquarters (because JinnyBoy was late!)


SMB: What’s the story behind “Get It Right”?

AS: A lot of East Malaysians will always face the “Are you Indonesian?” “Do you live on trees?” and “How did you get here?” questions whenever we are in West Malaysia. As an international communications and film studies student, I thought that it would be a good content for a video. I filmed my first video in my dormitory in hopes that I could educate viewers by incorporating humour in my content. My first episode “Bahasa Indonesia VS Melayu Sabah” made me famous! I had no expectations for it to be such a hit. My second video “Sabah & Sarawak, Welcome to Malaysia?”, on the other hand, did not receive much feedback. I did not give up just yet. I continued with my filming and uploaded my third video, “Sabah & Sarawak, Living in the Pokok?”, which turned out to be the ultimate game changer for me. I would describe this as the turning point of my life where I shot to fame. It was my first video to reach one million views. Suddenly, I was invited for radio interviews, jobs, and commercials. 



SMB: We love your ‘Son Bullies Grandmother” episodes! Tell us about your grandmother.

AS: We’re very very close. I can talk to her about anything and everything. She’s doesn’t like photos [laughs]. The episode started eight months ago when I just took my camera, pointed at her, and started filming. Everything she says is totally unscripted. She knew that I made videos for “school projects” but she was unaware that she was also part of my content! She was very pissed when she found out about her videos on my channel. Her friend told her that she was famous and even showed her the videos. She got so angry at me and told me I should not have done that. A minute later, she asks me “Berapa sudah view?” (How many views do we have now?). Now, that she knows she’s famous, she “pandai demand sudah” (knows how to name her price). 


Paulus, Age unknown, Housemate

SMB: Who exactly is Paulus? 

AS: I created Paulus to add more colours to my videos. He’s inspired by my uncle’s gardener and he best represents an exaggerated version of “orang betul-betul Sabah”. Paulus is very annoying and overreacts all the time. I guess that’s what makes him funny. 


SMB: You have a long way ahead of you. What’s your biggest achievement so far?

AS: I have achieved so much in less than a year. I was the first person from Sabah and Malaysia to be chosen to represent Asia to the YouTube Public Policy Summit in Los Angeles, USA. I’m also part of a 13-episode travelogue in Morocco, North Africa, which will be aired on Astro Tvi. Being a Radio Announcer for and former announcer for is also a big accomplishment for me. 


SMB: How did you get chosen for the YouTube Public Policy Summit in USA?

AS: When I first got the e-mail, I thought it was an automated e-mail, so I ignored it. Two weeks later, I receive another e-mail and a follow-up call from Google Asia asking for my confirmation to attend the event in Los Angeles, USA. I was the one of the two Malaysians to be selected, the other recipient was JinnyBoy. I was chosen because of my rapid growth in social media followers in just under a year. 


SMB: There’s no turning back now since you started your journey. Do you have any regrets?

AS: No, I have no regrets. I only wish I was more consistent the first six months. I probably could have achieved so much more. 


SMB: Did you have any points where you felt like giving up?

AS: I mentioned that my third video from the Get it Right episodes was the turning point in my life where I shot to fame. However, I also received a lot of backlash from netizens who were not happy about the content and titles of my videos, saying it was too sensitive. I received messages to take the video down. My mother, as much as she wanted to support me, told me to stop for my own safety. Reluctantly, I stopped for a while …  then I started receiving more messages about when was I going to upload my next video? One month later, I continued uploading to my channel.

It took me a while to realise that I actually started making my videos to make people smile and I want to be someone people can look up to. Cyberbullies and keyboard warriors are unavoidable. There will always be haters out there, but I consider them the “minorities” and just brush them off. 


SMB: What do you hope to achieve from all this?

AS: I hope to have my own production company called “Adam Shamil TV Productions” before the age of 25. Of course, I will continue to make my own videos and hopefully be able to introduce Sabah to the world. Indirectly, that would play a great role to boost the tourism in Sabah. 

Adam Shamil