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The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference | [Malcolm Gladwell]

The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference

In The Tipping Point, New Yorker writer Malcolm Gladwell looks at why major changes in society happen suddenly and unexpectedly. Just as a single sick person can start an epidemic of the flu, so too can a few fare-beaters and graffiti artists fuel a subway crime wave, or a satisfied customer fill the empty tables of a new restaurant. These are social epidemics, and the moment when they take off, when they reach their critical mass, is the Tipping Point.
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Audible Editor Reviews

Why we think it's Essential: Like the best social dynamics professor you never had, Malcolm Gladwell deconstructs a wide range of phenomena (from the reduction of crime in New York to the rise of Sesame Street) to deliver a fascinating understanding of how "social epidemics" spread. And while author/narrators are often a mixed blessing, Gladwell is so friendly and well-paced that I was actually disappointed when The Tipping Point was over. —Ed Walloga

Publisher's Summary

Featuring a new afterword.

Why did crime in New York drop in the mid-90s? Why is teenage smoking out of control? Why are television shows like Sesame Street good at teaching kids how to read?

In The Tipping Point, New Yorker writer Malcolm Gladwell looks at why major changes in society happen suddenly and unexpectedly. Just as a single sick person can start an epidemic of the flu, so too can a few fare-beaters and graffiti artists fuel a subway crime wave, or a satisfied customer fill the empty tables of a new restaurant. These are social epidemics, and the moment when they take off, when they reach their critical mass, is the Tipping Point.

Gladwell uncovers the personality types who are natural pollinators of new ideas and trends. He analyzes fashion trends, smoking, children's television, direct mail and the early days of the American Revolution for clues about making ideas infectious.

The Tipping Point is an intellectual adventure story with an infectious enthusiasm for the power and joy of new ideas. Most of all, it is a road map to change, with a profoundly hopeful message: that one imaginative person applying a well-placed lever can move the world.

©2007 Malcolm Gladwell; (P)2007 Hachette Audio

What the Critics Say

"Gladwell, a New Yorker staff writer, offers an incisive and piquant theory of social dynamics that is bound to provoke a paradigm shift in our understanding of mass behavioral change." (Booklist)
"Hip and hopeful, The Tipping Point is like the idea it describes: concise, elegant, but packed with social power. A book for anyone who cares about how society works and how we can make it better." (George Stephanopoulos)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

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  •  
    Theo Villa Park, IL, United States 02-20-12
    Theo Villa Park, IL, United States 02-20-12
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    "Loved it"
    If you could sum up The Tipping Point in three words, what would they be?

    Eye-Opening, Smart, Entertaining.


    Any additional comments?

    It reminded me of Freakonomics because of how statistics were used to explain things and the issues discussed (both books talked about reasons why the crime rate dropped in the 90s). But I thought Tipping Point was better than Freakonomics because it had more of a unifying theme.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Faelren Charlotte, NC 02-14-12
    Faelren Charlotte, NC 02-14-12
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    "Well Worth It"

    Interesting perspectives. Ideas that I haven't heard explained anywhere else. I like that he had details to support his theory.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Matt S. Ohio USA 02-11-12
    Matt S. Ohio USA 02-11-12 Member Since 2013
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    "Not Nearly as Cohesive as Outliers"

    Read this after Outliers- in addition to feeling "dated" (written 10+ years ago), I found many of the examples/stories to feel less connected than the later book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mighty Quinn 02-08-12 Member Since 2001
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    "Tipping Point is interesting"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    This book wanders a bit - as do his others - but it has lots of very interesting studies and theorems
    well worth the read


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ken METAIRIE, LA, United States 02-05-12
    Ken METAIRIE, LA, United States 02-05-12 Member Since 2011

    kberke

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    "Stop the Music"
    What did you like best about The Tipping Point? What did you like least?

    The explanation of non-intuitive causes.


    Were the concepts of this book easy to follow, or were they too technical?

    Easy to follow.


    What aspect of Malcolm Gladwell’s performance would you have changed?

    The music was annoying and insulting. I didn't need music to tell me that the author was summing up or drawing conclusions. Yuk!


    Who do you think would benefit most from listening to The Tipping Point?

    People who believe everything they think.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Julie 02-03-12
    Julie 02-03-12

    TeachR

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    "I listened to Tipping Point again"

    Gladwell does an amazing of bringing his stories to life. Compelling and engaging. I need to download some of his other works.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Clyde College Station, TX, United States 02-01-12
    Clyde College Station, TX, United States 02-01-12 Member Since 2011
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    "Very thought provoking."
    Would you listen to The Tipping Point again? Why?

    I will listen to this book several more times. With each listening, things missed at first will become more ovious.


    What other book might you compare The Tipping Point to and why?

    Outlers is by the same author and gives just as much to think about. While you may not agree with all Gladwell has to say, it will certainly give you pause.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    Two scenes stand out: The ride of Paul Revere and his less famous counterpart. The other is how concentrating on low-level crime in New York precipitated a steep decline in serious crime.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    I'm not sure this book would translate into film.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    theresa lindeman armstrong 01-31-12
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    "The Tipping Point a hasty generalization"
    Where does The Tipping Point rank among all the audiobooks you???ve listened to so far?

    in the top 10. The information and examples are specific and examine and analyze success.


    What was the most compelling aspect of this narrative?

    I think the way Malcolm Gladwell shows how things culminate together and how small things matter. I particularly like the example of the woman who spots trends.


    What does Malcolm Gladwell bring to the story that you wouldn???t experience if you just read the book?

    the inflection and tone of his voice suggest what he finds more relevant. I have a hard time reading due to my own medical conditions so I like that I can listen and absorb the book in one fell swoop.


    What???s the most interesting tidbit you???ve picked up from this book?

    the stickyness factor. I have three small children and it never occured to me.


    Any additional comments?

    I like how the general reader can asimilate and understand the concepts and then see them in every day life and possibly apply them.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    01-27-12
    01-27-12
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    "Very Insightful"

    Highly recommended, this was very insightful. Author did an excellent job or narrating as well.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Benjamin K. Harriman 01-25-12 Listener Since 2009
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    "Love Gladwell did not love the Tipping Point"
    What did you like best about The Tipping Point? What did you like least?

    I enjoyed the last 45 minutes of this 8 hour 33 minute book. He was precise and shared his take away after the research. I didn't care for his analogies. I think he may have choosen them over others to sell books but, I believe he could have shared more compelling stories of why things tip. I think he may have been reaching for the extreme to gain a reaction rather then more main stream examples that people could relate to.


    How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

    I liked the AIRWALK case and would have liked to see more that followed that type.


    What didn’t you like about Malcolm Gladwell’s performance?

    It dragged and was daunting to listening to. I almost would say it was painful to listen to. I enjoy his voice but the case studies he used I really did not connect well with.


    Who do you think would benefit most from listening to The Tipping Point?

    The idea that the innovator, marketing guy would enjoy this book might not be true but I think they would pay the 10 bucks for the last 45 minutes.


    Any additional comments?

    I just didn't enjoy this book as much as his first big success and I think it just comes down to stories he shares to make a case. The take away's are good but, I would recommend the purchase of Outliers over the tipping point.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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  • Neil
    BROSELEY, SHROPSHIRE, United Kingdom
    5/27/09
    Overall
    "Surprising - but maybe not!"

    Gladwell the maverick gives us his take on the spread of ideas, urban myths, and "sticky" advertising.
    I found it hard to get out of the car when this was playing, and wanting to go for a drive just so that i could indulge myself a little more with this exquisite book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Roger
    Southwick, West Sussex, United Kingdom
    2/16/09
    Overall
    "The tipping point is great"

    Try his videos on 'TED' if you want a free intro to him. It doesnt get to marketing really, until the end. To me thats fine as I prefer the idea of viral ideas than how to make people buy stuff.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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