CILISOS Syok Sendiri Culture Lifestyle Opinion!?

CILISOS reaches 1000 articles! Can you guess which ones were our most popular?

Amagad. CILISOS has bebel-ed so much since we first began sometime in April 2014, so much so we’re finally hitting our 1000th post!

Ok la technically it’s our 1001-th post… As we were writing, we got approval from our client to publish this sponsored article so that went live first. Salary more important than legacy 😛 huehuehue.

Anyway, some of you may be thinking, 1000 posts for a site that’s been running for 2 – 3 years? So little? Well that’s cause we mainly publish only one story a day. We publish so little because each writer takes about 2-3 days to craft a story. So instead of churning out 10 short stories a day, we try our best to dig deep into the subject matter and put pieces of the puzzle together before we finally call it a day.

(Ed’s plug: We’re looking for new blood! Interested in joining our team, full-time or freelance? Click here.)

So as we celebrate this milestone in numbers, we’ve decided to share the Top 10 most viewed stories on CILISOS.MY with numbers accurate on Google Analytics as of 2nd November 2016. We’ve also gotten the writer of each story to reflect on their work and tell us a little bit about what it was like writing them.


10. ‘The 5 oldest pubs in Malaysia that are amazingly still open!’ 

Total pageviews so far: 83,056

Bragging rights go to: Chak, Editor-in-Chief




“Whoah the first thing on this list is… SPONSORED CONTENT?! NO WAY! Guinness was celebrating its 50th anniversary and wanted something that kinda reminded Malaysians of how long they’ve loved the Guinness brand, so we figured we’d go deep into the history of Malaysian drinking habits by checking out pubs that had been open for a REALLY long time. (And coincidentally, all of them serve Guinness!)

We pride ourselves in generating sponsored content that doesn’t shy away from of the fact that it’s sponsored, and this is a perfect case in point. In fact, for this particular month, our top two articles were both sponsored content (check out the Dominos 007 one here). Funnily enough, recently, a year after its original publish date, the article flared up all over again and got another 27000 views, which just elevated it to qualify for this list.

How? Well just Google “Malaysian pubs” and see for yourself ? #humblebrag” – Chak 


9. ‘The 15 funniest company signs in Malaysia

Total pageviews so far: 94,151

Bragging rights go to: Chak, Editor-in-Chief 


“When we first started CILISOS, one of the things we knew we wanted was to get our readers to help us with articles. So we thought of the most obvious choice – funny signs in Malaysia. And damn did we get ALOT of entries for our first contest (i think the prize was like RM50).

After this one, we did another one for Samsung as a test on whether it would work with a brand. And lo, that one also went viral. Since then, this format of asking readers for content has become one of our top products for brands – the User-Generated Contest (UGC). If you want one, send an email to [email protected] k? #shamelessplug

Especially Samsung, since that first one was a freebie and we STILL haven’t gotten them in as a client *hint*hint*”Chak


8. ‘10 things a Malaysian realises living in Singapore

Total pageviews so far: 94,411

Bragging rights go to: Sgt Pepper, freelancer 


“At the time, I had already been in Singapore for about 10 months and many questions about my life across the causeway would come from family and friends. When Lydia from CILISOS approached me and suggested this as a topic, I was skeptical about how many people would want to read something they already had concrete opinions about. However, after formulating a rough list in my head, I figured ‘why not?’ as long as I told about the differences between Malaysia and Singapore as I saw them and not rely on stereotypes that were typically thrown about.

Honestly,  I was just stunned when it went live and people started sharing it (like oh-my-goodness-people-who-are-not-family-are-sharing-it stunned). Considering it was my first article for CILISOS and being a while since I did any proper writing, it was a welcome response. More importantly, the comments were mostly positive and it was warming to see people (from both sides of the causeway) generally agreeing with what was said and could appreciate the tongue-in-cheek nature of the story.”Sgt Pepper


7. 6 Malaysians who restored our faith in humanity

Total pageviews so far: 98,216

Bragging rights go to: Lydia, Managing Editor


“This got published in September 2014, just months after the MH370 and MH17 tragedies. There were other not-so-nice stuff happening too, but I can’t quite remember what they were anymore. All I remember was just despair and negativity all around. It was just heavy and depressing, the kind that makes you wanna stay in bed under the duvet and ignore the world.

So at that point I decided to write something positive, something to distract us for a second. Something that would restore our faith in one another. It wasn’t something I consciously planned and I had like zero expectations in terms of performance, so it made me super happy to see Malaysians of all backgrounds passing the article around, sharing their own heartwarming experiences with us. It was just very nourishing to the soul to see different races upholding each other, even if it was just in the comments section.”Lydia


6. Wait. Did Najib just launch his own army?

Total pageviews so far: 126,473

Bragging rights go to: Uihua, Writer


“So, this wasn’t one of CILISOS’s best moments because, believe it or not, that’s one of the more civil responses I got for the article.


I’ve actually been meaning to start an article on the Civil Defense Department (JPAM)’s move to the PM’s Department when news on the NSOF came up.

I was actually on leave when Chak called to inform me of the ruckus happening in the comments section as the article attracted a LOT of people who didn’t agree with it. And calling me out on being ignorant of military matters. And not interviewing military people/departments. And downplaying the threat to the country. And not respecting our nation’s defenders. And my mother is green. So much for being on leave.

Seeing this article on the top 10 is quite a bittersweet feeling because yay, made it; but also it highlighted some oversights that I should have considered waaaay beforehand. Articles like these are one of the most challenging to write because there isn’t enough information to go on, so we have to rely on people who aren’t just more knowledgable, but also willing to go on record. And sometimes getting views from the government side of things is hard, like capital H-A-R-D.

While the political analyst we interviewed provided valid views, talking to someone from the Malaysian military would definitely have provided more balance and credibility. But it’s a lesson learnt and I’ll just have to remember this for future articles and…. soldier on 😉 ” – Uihua


[VIDEO] Something at night is decimating the fish in this Sabahan Village

5. 21 Malaysian commenters on Facebook – which one are you?

Total pageviews so far: 131,955

Bragging rights go to: Lydia, Managing Editor


“I still cringe-smile when I think of this. It was one of my first few stories when I was freelancing for CILISOS, published even before the site was officially launched. Chak wants something localised and funny? OK I’ll give him something localised and funny.

So being the Facebook-addict I am, I decided to write a narcissistic listicle based on my personal observations on Malaysian Facebook users. People are naturally drawn to observations on the human culture, especially one that could be a reflection of themselves. It’s kinda like scanning thru’ the back pages of JUICE Magazine, trying to spot photos of you or your friends clubbing at Zouk… Or automatically fixing your hair when you step into an elevator with a mirrored wall… 

Anyway, I sent it in, closed the chapter, carried on in life. Then when Chak told me he had just published it, the article had gone viral in hours. I was freaking out, scanning through each word for typos and crap like that. CILISOS even got their FIRST hater who took the trouble to sign up as a user to comment that I sucked. Meh, of course I do.

So proud we put it up on our FB page.

So proud we put it up on our FB page. I have you email details btw, Lydia Kwan You Suck.

Anyway, still can’t believe this sits at #5. Amagad, y’all a bunch of narcissists.”Lydia


4. ‘9 confirm-almost-sure answers for puzzled Bersih 4 goers’ 

Total pageviews so far: 134,466

Bragging rights go to: Hans and Jolyn, Writers


“The authors of this article were actually me and fellow writer, Jolyn, but because everyone else had an entry in the top 10 except me, I was assigned to write about this *sobs*.

This article was written just 4 months after I had joined CILISOS, but the shelling I received from this article has been forever seared into my memory. That’s because the first draft of this article was so bad by our editor’s standards that he did massive rewrites.

And while many mistakes were made, probably the biggest mistake was me first not clarifying just what exactly my editor expected of me. He wanted the content to have wayyyy more depth than what I first envisioned it to be, and subsequently, the effort I had to put in. Point is, I messed up pretty badly la. What made it worse was when this article went viral, justifying the shelling I got for my initial work hahaha.

The article wasn’t easy, but no article after that was either. The difference is that this article demonstrated to me the full effect the expectations placed on a CILISOS writer, which I have ever since tried to live up to. :P”Hans


3. 5 Malaysian criminals who are 100% supervillains 

Total pageviews so far: 174,742

Bragging rights go to: Chee Seng, Freelance Writer


“I first wrote this as a serious crime piece. I hawked it to CILISOS who liked the idea but not the drama. So began weeks of sweating over how to turn stories of murder and mayhem into comedy gold. In desperation, I shamelessly stole the format of and Badass Of The Week. I also had to slash the length from 9,000 words originally to 4000 words. But that’s still about as long as the Oxford Dictionary in internet terms. Experts said no netizen would read such a long piece but I’m so glad CILISOS took a risk anyway.

It was surreal to watch the number of shares climbing. I was so humbled that my small contribution to the …. Ah, heck! I was totally stoked! Every writer wants an audience, and holy crap, that’s a pants-wetting number of readers! You love me, you really, really love me!! Woohooo!” – Chee Seng

2. 4 crisis-handling tips we learnt from Tony Fernandes & QZ8501

Total pageviews so far: 273,065

Bragging rights go to: Chak, Editor-in-Chief


“Whenever an event of this magnitude occurs, CILISOS tends to look at ways of covering it that other people might be missing. While many mysterious theories were circulating about the whereabouts of the plane, we also noticed a clear difference in the way social media was reacting to this missing AirAsia flight, compared to the tragedy of MH370 before it.

And when we took a closer look, we realised that the difference in sentiment came down to the response of Tony Fernandez (contrary to some comments, AirAsia was not our advertiser at the time, but is now). In those responses, he gave people the confidence that he was doing everything he humanly could.

To be honest, the article had maybe 15,000 views or so… until they tragically found the plane and everyone’s worst fears were confirmed… then it doubled every hour on the hour… Perhaps because like us, people were trying to find the positivity in very unfortunate circumstances.

The success of these sorts of articles can’t be planned. Sometimes, timing just makes something go viral, and it’s not something you can (or would want to) replicate. Even the Washington Post linked to the article, but it’s not something you celebrate when a tragedy of this magnitude happens.” – Chak


1. 12 brands you didn’t know were actually Malaysian

Total pageviews so far: 366,792

Bragging rights go to: Jolyn, Writer


“Haha, the idea for this story didn’t even come from me or anyone from CILISOS for that matter. To give credit where credit is due, it came from Gary, the General Manager of Hexa, one of our early clients.

Looking for information was really easy… we just stalked brands’ websites to find out where they’re from. Then we picked the brands that people commonly think of as international and wrote a list of 12. Didn’t expect it to become so crazy! 

The number has also been constantly growing as it’s been #1 on our list since it went live. Not sure why, but maybe because it’s the first thing you get when you look for ‘Malaysian brands’ on Google 🙂 

Anyway, we hope people learnt something new from it and it’ll encourage them to beli buatan Malaysia! Or to at least behold the power of good marketing.” – Jolyn


Now to our WORST articles… Hoho….

Walaooo…. Check out the skillz of Chak, our Editor-in-Chief. He has bragging rights for the most stories in our Top 10 list! But actually right, he’s also responsible for all of our Worst 3 articles of all time:


‘Sahur bersama world cup fans’. (274 views)


273 views! And that is the entire article itself lololol

This post was literally just this image. Where is the body copy yo?! ‘Facebook status of the day 4/4/14’ (273 views!)





Anyway, fine, let’s be fair to him. These were published way way waaaaay back when none of us knew what we were doing. Zero experience. Hantam jer. But takpe, we learn from our mistakes.

On a more serious note… 1000 posts down, we’ve grown from strength to strength, although there is so much more that we can do to improve ourselves. We’ve had some ups and downs, with some downs being painful, brutal, but important lessons to carry us through our lives. But all in all, we’re eternally grateful to all our readers who have followed us through this journey, our incredible sponsors who supported us, and CILISOS sugar daddy who believed in us all this time. Muah muah.

K, back to work for us. Bye for now!

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