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Thread: tip off

  1. #1
    dilodi83 is offline Senior Member
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    Default tip off

    let's imagine that in a class the students have been trying to work an exercise out but they do not manage to solve it. The teacher want to give them a hint, can he say anything like this: "ok guys, I'll tip you off", or do you just use this verb when and info is given to the police?

    Thank you all.

  2. #2
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: tip off

    It would work if the teacher gave a lot more than a hint IMO.

  3. #3
    SlickVic9000's Avatar
    SlickVic9000 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: tip off

    (Not a Teacher)

    No, in this situation, I would say, "Let me give you a hint."
    Also, "tip off" isn't just in reference to police informants. For instance:
    "You're dilated pupils and flushed cheeks tipped me off that you were hammered."
    "Sarah tipped off John's mother to his pot stash."
    "Someone tipped off the cartel to the upcoming drug bust."
    Last edited by SlickVic9000; 10-Jul-2013 at 00:52.

  4. #4
    billmcd is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: tip off

    Quote Originally Posted by dilodi83 View Post
    let's imagine that in a class the students have been trying to work an exercise out but they do not manage to solve it. The teacher want to give them a hint, can he say anything like this: "ok guys, I'll tip you off", or do you just use this verb when and info is given to the police?

    Thank you all.
    Yes, "tip someone off" would be typically used to provide some information/warning about a future action/event. SlickVic's response would be commonly used but you could also say something like "I'll give you a tip".

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