Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun An act of starting play at the beginning of a period with a jump ball.
  • noun A piece of confidential, advance, or inside information.
  • noun An indication of an otherwise unknown fact or probability.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun idiomatic An obvious clue or indication.
  • noun idiomatic A report of suspicious behaviour, especially to an authority.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun inside information that something is going to happen
  • noun the act of starting a basketball game with a jump ball

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[tip + (kick)off.]

Examples

  • To recap, in case you just got back from the Hamptons, a few weeks ago Blodget suggested on his Business Insider website that Bank of America might need to raise anywhere from $100 billion to $200 billion in new capital -- that wide spread should have been a tip-off to the rigor of the analysis -- based on information he had gleaned from two financial blogs, Naked Capitalism and Zero Hedge.

    Yvette Kantrow: Pleading the First

  • While the angel is a thrill of no trivial dimension, she's also a tip-off to Kushner's billowing excesses.

    David Finkle: First Nighter: Tony Kushner's Angels in America Flies on Gossamer Wings

  • Also, gone is the claustrophobic paranoia ... replaced by a trio of aliens bent on hopping from host to host, leaving behind hollowed-out human skin shells (an obvious tip-off to the characters) in order to accomplish their secret mission.

    REVIEW: Who Goes There? by John W. Campbell

  • To recap, in case you just got back from the Hamptons, a few weeks ago Blodget suggested on his Business Insider website that Bank of America might need to raise anywhere from $100 billion to $200 billion in new capital -- that wide spread should have been a tip-off to the rigor of the analysis -- based on information he had gleaned from two financial blogs, Naked Capitalism and Zero Hedge.

    Yvette Kantrow: Pleading the First

  • Deputy Prime Minister Chalerm Yubamrung said Thai authorities received a tip-off before New Year's of a planned attack, which was said to target Israelis.

    Thailand: U.S. Embassy Warns Of Possible Terrorist Attack In Bangkok

  • A number of years ago I saw a play, The Exonerated the title's a tip-off, directed by the multi-talented writer/actor/director/producer Bob Balaban.

    Roger Smith: It's Too Late for Troy Davis, But It's Not Too Late for Us

  • Another tip-off about her attitude is that later that year, she commissioned a painting of her lord chamberlain by Mr. Mortimer.

    A Monarch Divided

  • Sticking to his routine before big games at home, James was the first player to arrive and was on the floor more than three hours before tip-off.

    Cavaliers hold off Pistons for 2-0 series lead

  • A number of years ago I saw a play, The Exonerated the title's a tip-off, directed by the multi-talented writer/actor/director/producer Bob Balaban.

    Roger Smith: It's Too Late for Troy Davis, But It's Not Too Late for Us

  • To recap, in case you just got back from the Hamptons, a few weeks ago Blodget suggested on his Business Insider website that Bank of America might need to raise anywhere from $100 billion to $200 billion in new capital -- that wide spread should have been a tip-off to the rigor of the analysis -- based on information he had gleaned from two financial blogs, Naked Capitalism and Zero Hedge.

    Yvette Kantrow: Pleading the First

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