Maven

Extracted from Wikipedia: Maven

A maven (also mavin or mayvin) is a trusted expert in a particular field, who seeks to pass his or her knowledge on to others

Malcolm Gladwell used it in his book The Tipping Point (Little Brown, 2000) to describe those who are intense gatherers of information and impressions, and so are often the first to pick up on new or nascent trends. The popularity of the work of Safire and Gladwell has made the word particularly widely used in their particular contexts. Gladwell also suggests that mavens may act most effectively when in collaboration with connectors - i.e.: those people who have wide network of casual acquaintances by whom they are trusted, often a network that crosses many social boundaries and groups. Connectors can thus easily and widely distribute the advice or insight of a maven.

In The Tipping Point, Gladwell described a "maven trap" as a method of obtaining information from mavens. In the book he gave the example of the toll-free telephone number on the back of a bar of Ivory soap, which one could call with questions or comments about the product. Gladwell's opinion is that only those who are passionate or knowledgeable about soap would bother to call and that this is a method by which the company could inexpensively glean valuable information about their market.

In The Human Fabric (Aviri, 2004), Bijoy Goswami uses the term to describe one of three core energies in people, organizations and society.

Some have identified the maven not just as a Jewish word, but as a Jewish concept. One site on Jewish language states, "A maven is an expert, and it's something that every Jew thinks he is on every subject that exists." [1] [unreliable source?] Jewish radio talk show host Barry Farber would often say, "I am the world's foremost expert on my own opinion". This highlights the fact that a maven being self-appointed, following his advice is an act of faith.

In the computerized version of the game Scrabble, the computer player is named Maven.

The term is used heavily in stock market related spam emails.

In The Tipping Point, Gladwell described a "maven trap" as a method of obtaining information from mavens. In the book he gave the example of the toll-free telephone number on the back of a bar of Ivory soap, which one could call with questions or comments about the product. Gladwell's opinion is that only those who are passionate or knowledgeable about soap would bother to call and that this is a method by which the company could inexpensively glean valuable information about their market.

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