Customer Reviews for

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

Average Rating 4
( 734 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(271)

4 Star

(249)

3 Star

(109)

2 Star

(52)

1 Star

(53)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

Most Helpful Favorable Review

19 out of 21 people found this review helpful.

Does not disappoint.

The book is about the "tipping point", that is, that moment when an idea or social behaviour has reached a level where it "tips" and spreads like crazy.

The book makes sense about how these things happen by using three rules- The Law of the Few, The Stickiness...
The book is about the "tipping point", that is, that moment when an idea or social behaviour has reached a level where it "tips" and spreads like crazy.

The book makes sense about how these things happen by using three rules- The Law of the Few, The Stickiness Factor, and the Power of Context. Taking three rules, then, the book uses them to explain seemingly puzzling epidemic situations in society such as teen smoking or bestsellers.

Fun and interesting, if this kind of topic appeals to you, you'll like the book- its well written and an easy read. Other books that might appeal to general interest readers include The Sixty-Second Motivator

posted by 240452 on October 27, 2008

Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review

Most Helpful Critical Review

7 out of 15 people found this review helpful.

Although a catchy title, but the content is quite the opposite

I bought the book upon the terrific description of the content by the publisher. It seemed very interesting how they described the sociological manipulation done by companies and governement. I started reading the book but from the first chapter, it seemed that the wr...
I bought the book upon the terrific description of the content by the publisher. It seemed very interesting how they described the sociological manipulation done by companies and governement. I started reading the book but from the first chapter, it seemed that the writer kept on repeating the same concept the same action over and over again. I put it down for a bit, started reading other chapters so I may be interested again but it didn't happen. The same boring descriptions, the same concepts, repetitious stories went on and on again without any analysis of the process. If there was research done, I didn't get the legistic of it and I definitely didn't get the writing tipping point. He didn't introduce any new ideas on how the manipulation of the society is done by the media, the elite few with money who pull the string at their whim....New concept? hardly! researached analysis? if there was one...poorly done.

posted by sleeplessreader on September 6, 2009

Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 249 review with 4 star rating   See All Ratings
Page 1 of 13
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 9, 2010

    The Tipping Point

    Malcolm Gladwell, the author of The Tipping Point, explores the phenomenon known as the tipping point. According to Gladwell the tipping point is the moment at which "an idea, trend, or social behavior crosses a treshold, tips, and spreads like wildfire". In other words, the point when an idea, trend, or behavior becomes an sensation to the world. Gladwell researches the behaviors of fashion trends, crime rate, and best selling novels to explain how small, yet powerful changes can result in an tipping point.

    Gladwell compares the idea of the tipping point to an epidemic of the flu. A simple sneeze from a sick person can start a flu epidemic just as a word of mouth can make an restaurant a big success. Gladwell seperates his book into the three rules of epidemics. The law of the few, the stickiness factor, and the power of context each explain how and why an idea, trend, or behavior results in an epidemic.

    Gladwell uses examples such as Paul Revere's midnight ride to support his ideas on epidemics. Malcolm Gladwell states that "Paul Revere's ride is perhaps the most famous historial example of a word-of-mouth epidemic". Gladwell continues by calling Paul Revere a connector, a person who is truly socially diverse. Revere was able contact an abundant amount of people because he was connected with a large amount of diverse people. According to Gladwell, the message itself has to be sticky enough to make people listen and respond. The message "the British are coming" was a sticky phrase that made the message itself important enough to respond to. Malcolm Gladwell's context law states at the enviroment at which a message is sent also makes an impact. Paul Revere sent his message in the evening because the majority of people are sleeping and when they are woken up by a noise they are more susceptible to listen.

    The Tipping Point is a brilliantly written book that will change your outlook on famous fashion trends, falling crime rates, and the success of best selling novels. Malcolm Gladwell uses interesting examples throughout to make his book an enjoyable read. By the end of this book Gladwell will make you believe that any immovable object can be tipped if it is pushed in the right place.

    8 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 10, 2011

    really good- a must read, very educational

    In Malcolm Gladwell's book The Tipping Point many different topics are discussed and analyzed, trying to find solutions as to why things "tip" and what different factors are involved. From "Blues Clues", and Paul Revear's midnight ride to the decrease in crime in NYC and the cause of suicide in the islands of Micronesia, it is shown that the factors of stickiness, connectivity, context and salesmen qualities play a major part in the way different events tip and spread. One big theme in Gladwell's book that made it effective was the repetitive mentioning of Connectors, people who know a lot of other people, and can spread ideas through multiple communities, making ideas contagious. Adding to this theme Gladwell outlines the concept of "stickiness", illustrating people who hear about a new ideas remember them, and in some way do something about the situation. Throughout the whole book Gladwell has the great ability to draw the reader into simple concepts with examples and stories, resulting in the reader being able to recognizing themselves in the examples and stories and seeing where they would put themselves if they were in those situations, allowing them to think what they would do to change the situation at hand. While reading this book I was interested in the way Gladwell enhanced his theories with concrete examples and stories, making the book very effective in getting his point across. Although I cannot agree with all his points and solutions to some of the situations and theories, I thought this book was very well written and very educational, giving the reader many things to think about, allowing their brains to adapt to something new and synthesize the information. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone; it includes great topics of discussion making the book good for classes to read together and discuss the different theories together.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 17, 2010

    The Tipping Point

    The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell is a really extraordinary novel that explores sociological studies and interesting occurrences in life. It shows the little, random and amazing things that happen and make a big difference. The book contains the three main ideas that drive the studies to seem so unusual; the Law of Few, the Stickiness Factor and the Power of Context. The Law of Few means that a couple of people have a more significant influence on things that happen than the rest of society. The Stickiness Factor is the concept that repetition is a very impactful strategy that causes people to remember things more easily. The Power of Context is how a little change in the circumstances of an environment can have an impact on the events that occur there. So when all of these things are studied and really paid attention to, it is bizarre how they apply to these theories and are important to society. When I began to read this book, I realized that it was different from anything I've ever read before. It opened my eyes to the fact that such little things really can make a huge impact on things. It was a unique perspective on sociological studies and unique occurrences that happen every day. " If you want to bring a fundamental change in people's belief and behavior. you need to create a community around them, where those new beliefs can be practiced and expressed and nurtured." I thought that this was an insightful and thoughtful quote. It demonstrated the great advice that Gladwell brings to the novel. His writing style is very creative and particular. I thought he was a very good author to write about such a topic and brought a very interesting aspect and point of view to everything.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted May 3, 2010

    The Tipping point

    I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book because of all of the little ways I connected to the "meat" of the story. For example, when Gladwell explained educating children through television rather then having television being a bad influence on the developmental learning of a child caught me by surprise. When he said "Sesame Street" was the first television program to educate children, I realized that when I was a young kid and used to watch that, how many "mini life lessons" were included in each and every episode. This novel really opened my eyes into all the information that can merely be obtained by just reading this book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted September 13, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Great information, all right flow.

    I thought the book was interesting with the presentation of facts and case studies. However, Outliers-- his other book-- has a far better flow. I recommend this for people who love to gain knowledge.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted May 31, 2009

    Read this book, but . . .

    Everybody should read this book, but bear the following in mind: Gladwell makes his point perfectly adequately in the introduction via the Hush Puppies example, but then spends the rest of the book belaboring the point instead of expanding on it. I wanted to yell, "I BELIEVE you already -- what ELSE to you have to say??"
    Nevertheless, everyone should read this book, because it explains an interesting phenomenon we all see in our society nearly every day: exactly what DOES cause one fad (or problem, or solution to a problem) to take hold while another is stillborn? Why skateboards instead of the continued existence of roller skates? Why pet rocks, mood rings and smiley faces? Why did yoyo's, a toy from the ancient, discarded 1950's, suddenly experience a big surge in popularity in the late 1960's? Insights into questions like these are a big part of the value of this book, so I recommend it.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 5, 2009

    Not a book to pass on

    When I first was told I had no choice but to read I book for my AP Language class. I picked the Tipping Point as the least of all evils. However, I was happily surprised. The idea of a book that heavily deals with economics sounds dry, and dull. But it is written in a fashion that is far more intriguing then boring. You learn about trends and how they catch on, you are entertained and yet you are educated at the same time. The book does a wonderful job of talking about topics that art necessarily new, but they are expressed with a new generation in mind. When talking about social networking the "six degrees of Kevin Bacon" is discussed. I believe this is a great example of "don't judge a book by its cover" it is certainly not a book to miss.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 4, 2009

    An Interesting and Stimulating Read

    I thoroughly enjoyed reading The Tipping Point. I first picked it up expecting it to be dry and composed of straight facts. However, it offered interesting insight into the world of "fads" and how they catch on. It educated as well as entertained me. Gladwell's use of common examples throughout the book (such as Hush Puppies) made the book both easy to follow and consistently drove his point home. Gladwell compares the spreading of fads to the spreading of sexually transmitted diseases. At first this may seem a bit out there, but after reading further you find yourself nodding your head and seeing his point. The Tipping Point not only explores the fads themselves, but human nature in reaction to these new trends. He explains that for something to catch on, a large number of people need to embrace it. He explains why the public is lead to do so. I highly recommend this book. It's an excellent read.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted May 3, 2009

    Very insightful..good read

    Gladwell discusses the way in which the social and economic worlds revolve around epidemics; he explains what factors cause something (products, fashions, outlooks) to "tip" one way or another. The author is able to seamlessly incorporate seemingly unrelated examples to the main theme of how things in a society are tipped. Things can be tipped through word of mouth, advertisement, connectors, mavens, and salesmen; things that make fertile ground for trends to take root. Gladwell also includes something called the "stickiness factor" to help explain why a trend would or would not take root and "stick." Popularity in these trends however are susceptible to the environment in which they are created in. If trends start to move and change then the stickiness factor will take place and the trend may lessen or even disappear. However, Gladwell explains how it takes more than one single person to create a trend. It starts with one person or a small underground group and dominos into effect. The book gives examples from Hushpuppies and their near bankrupt recovery to NYC crime rates in order to explain the different factors that cause a tip. Gladwell explains that a lot has to do with the human connection; kids sporting hushpuppies look different and eventually look cool in the eye of the public. This creates a sense that these shoes are trendy. What happens when everyone is wearing them and they are no longer different? Are they still cool? Questions of that nature are left somewhat unanswered but overall, "The Tipping Point" is a wonderful read and worth the $14.95.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 15, 2014

    Gladwell had many ways to connect with the reader which is what

    Gladwell had many ways to connect with the reader which is what I appreciated most.
    He showed the way humans can be attracted to the oddest things but still find sense into doing so.
    As a teen reading this being around those precautions of smoking, basically the fads he pointed out. I felt a genuine tone he had to write
    about this subject.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 24, 2013

    Loved this book. First Gladwell book I've read, and I haven't st

    Loved this book. First Gladwell book I've read, and I haven't stopped. 

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted July 5, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Superb

    This work is rich in psychosocial as well sociological text that explains (with a unique twist) how famous events, products and people become reknowned world wide. It measures the vast routes and phenominal directions of growth given unlikely catalysts. I was left with several lessons but also the comforting knowledge that anything is possible even that which may seem less likey. Inovation indeed does pay off.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 11, 2011

    Great Book

    The Tipping Point is an interesting, in depth explanation of today's society and driving forces behind epidemics. Gladwell presents an interesting perspective behind virality paired with thorough research that keeps a captivated reader. For a book with so much information, it is a very entertaining and thought provoking piece.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 10, 2011

    A Definite Read

    The Tipping Point utilizes a multitude of examples in order to drive his point home. His theory of the tipping point-that a little results in a lot is driven home through examples. Although the book may appear repetitive to some, Gladwell's only way of supporting his idea, is to use examples. These examples the three parts of the tipping point so the examples are brought up multiple times throughout the book. overall, this book provides a theory that is well supported, as Gladwell uses good language and examples in order to drive his point home.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 10, 2011

    A Must Read

    I first heard of Malcolm Gladwell when I read his book, Outliers. In that book Gladwell outlines the factors of success that differ from the beloved rags-riches-work-real-hard-and-everything-will-work-out-for you philosophies, and focus on the other things that influence success, such as the 10 000 hour rule, the degree to which when you were born matters (especially as a hockey player) and other things. Gladwell's approach to writing is methodical, thorough and coherent. This is evident in The Tipping Point where he examines the birth of epidemics, fads, trends, viruses, etc. Whether it's Paul Revere or Blues Clues, Gladwell reaches his audience by discussing very familiar fads to explain his abstract points. The chapters may seem long and a little too textbook style for a popular non-fiction book, it is still a terrific read and highly recommended.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 20, 2011

    Worth Reading

    Overall, "The Tipping Point" analyzes how trends are developed and are taken hold of by consumers and customers. Ultimately, we have all experienced and been part of certain trends in our own lives that have seem to have endless popularity and others that have tried to start, but fail and are quickly forgotten. The author, Malcolm Gladwell, argues that there are a number of factors that play into every successful and popular trend and that if you were to look at any such trend throughout history, you will find that they all share similar processes and qualities. Gladwell begins by introducing the three "Rules of Epidemics." These three variables determine when and whether certain trends will achieve popularity and take off. The three rules are: the Law of the Few, the Stickiness Factor, and the Power of Context. The Law of the Few explains that in order for a trend to become influential, a number of influential people must intervene. Gladwell classifies these people as Connectors, Mavens, and Salesmen. Connectors are basically just what they say they are; they are able to bring people together from different parts of life. Connectors can foster ideas between relationships that may not develop naturally otherwise. Mavens are people who have a want and need to inform consumers so that the decisions they make are informed and practical. Salesmen are people who have a unique personality that allows them to be extremely persuasive and therefore influence the decisions that consumers make. The Stickiness Factor refers to the uniqueness of the trend and what makes it "stick" in the minds of the public and therefore influence their behavior. It is often unique and different because it is contradictive of what is currently believed by most people. Gladwell explains how the children's television show "Sesame Street" represented the Stickiness Factor because it changed how everyone thought about children's cognitive thinking along with their television watching behavior and showed that a television show like "Sesame Street" actually improved a child's reading and writing ability. Then years later, another television show, "Blue's Clues," did the same thing again. Because of "Blue's Clues," new research showed that by watching and child's logic and reasoning abilities could improve significantly. Both of these shows are examples of something different from what was thought to be the right way. The Power of Context is the last essential aspect that Gladwell defines. The Power of Context is basically that in order for a trend to take off, the time and environment in which it is introduced must be just right. To illustrate this point, Gladwell shows how there was a rapid decline in violent crimes in New York City in the nineties because of changes that were made to New York's environment such as painting over graffiti and cracking down on individuals who would not pay for the subway. Even though these were small changes, this led to the overall trend of the decreased violent crime rate. Along with changes to the environment, a large number of people must embrace the trend in order to catapult it to massive popularity. Gladwell remarks that there are unusual tendencies depending on the size of social groups as well. He goes on to remark that groups of 150 members or less display a level of intimacy, interdependency, and efficiency that to dissipate as soon as the group's size increases over 150 members. Many corporations us

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 20, 2011

    Recommended for Business Students

    In this book, Malcolm Gladwell took a familiar concept in biological science, explained it and applied it to business world. Medical dictionaries define an epidemic as something that affects an atypically large number of individuals within a population, community or region at the same time. Epidemics become obvious to the public when there is unexpected exponential growth of a disease or a condition. They are usually caused by one small change that upsets the equilibrium of an environment. Gladwell explains how an outbreak of syphilis in Baltimore in the 1990s was not caused by users of crack cocaine as was officially reported, but was instead the result of a small change to the city's environment. A few housing projects were demolished causing many people having to find a new place to live. These people moved all over the city and took their disease with them. When the disease was contained, no one noticed. It only caused alarm when it was allowed to spread to new locations.
    Throughout the book, Gladwell elaborates on different small changes that can propagate trends and promote their exponential growth into business epidemics. Different types of people play enormous roles in spreading an idea. Connectors bring other people together and spread any and all information they have to whoever will listen while Mavens are holders of information and teach people who want to know. Salesmen round out the group with their ability to persuade people to join in on a trend that the Connectors had talked about and the Mavens provided data for. In business, in order for a population to pick up on a message, that message must be "sticky". Something about it must translate and make sense to an initial set of the population who will run with it. The environment, or context, of a message is also an important factor for growth and spread. Humans are sensitive to the world around them which is why a simple task of cleaning graffiti from the New York Transit System ended up being responsible for lowering the crime rate of the entire city.
    Overall, the book accomplished a goal of getting people to think differently and this book should be part of any business school curriculum. Incorporating concepts from non-business functions can be beneficial to students by teaching them that they should consider alternatives to what has traditionally been taught. Business success comes from doing something novel, getting it to stick and getting it to spread. Science, math and history can all provide examples and theories on how to do this. To me, the drawback to the book was its repetition. A concept was stated, evidence was presented, more evidence with slight modification was presented and the concept was repeated. Once I recognized this pattern early on, the book became less enjoyable to read.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 9, 2010

    The Over Analysis of Everyday Thinking Becomes A Bestselling Novel

    Reluctant to read a 'non-fiction' or self help book etc. for my 10th Grade Honors English class, I decided to pick up something different, and due to it's stellar reviews I picked up The Tipping Point. I'd never read a book like this before, without a main character, a plot or story-line, and I expected it to be tedious. However as soon as I started reading I found myself captivated by example after example of how Malcolm Gladwells theory repeatedly proved itself right through countless real world demonstrations. For the most part the author presented the information in a clear and explanatory way that evoked it's evidential nature to help readers understand his theory. Everything seemed very thoroughly researched and credible, and the diction of the text made it easy to understand while still sounding intelligent. What I personally found appealing was the fact that this completely logical large scale idea seemed to be drawn from the silent investigations I often pursue in my own thoughts. They never actually leave my head but when I'm focused on doing something else often times I'll think of all the reasons I can why one thing is the way it is. Now I don't know if that's normal but I definitely think it's a powerful thing when an author that take those often inconclusive thoughts and turn it into a full blown piece of literature.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 4, 2010

    Eye Opening and Mind Bottling

    The Tipping Point by: Malcolm Gladwell is one of the most intriguing books that I've read. The concepts and theories described throughout have changed my perception on how the world functions, and how the minor details in our everyday lives have the ability to make an impact. In each chapter, Gladwell explains how specific examples of personalities, or living circumstances can connect to one and other and create a tipping point. The tipping point is a crucial moment when a trend or a disease catches on and becomes an epidemic. Throughout the book, my interest was sparked with each chapter, and quickly became very difficult to put down. Gladwell's style of writing makes you feel as if you are having a conversation with him. This makes every thing very relatable and understandable. The concepts throughout are not overwhelming, and provide great details and explanation through the in depth research done of when and why a tipping point may occur. My interest with sociology and psychology made this book even more enjoyable to read, because it educates on how the two are compatible with the process of a tipping point. Gladwell uses a variety of examples where a tipping point occurs; from medical to marketing, every situation has one. This also contributes to what I enjoy most about this writing style, because it's not specific on just one topic or field alone. I highly recommend this book to allow people to have a better understanding of how seemingly insignificant actions are crucial to contributing to the process of a tipping point. The concept of this book is refreshing and worth investing in, due to the quality in writing style and research done.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 30, 2010

    Useful book with "new" perspective

    The original book is about 10 years old so the perspective is new to me but it is good and useful. It is an interesting discussion on word of mouth and how things can be successful or not. I will read more books by M. Gladwell.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 249 review with 4 star rating   See All Ratings
Page 1 of 13