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Manipulable vs. Manipulatable — What's the Difference?

By Tayyaba Rehman & Fiza Rafique — Updated on April 26, 2024
"Manipulable" implies something easily controlled or influenced, while "manipulatable" is less commonly used but carries a similar meaning.
Manipulable vs. Manipulatable — What's the Difference?

Difference Between Manipulable and Manipulatable


Key Differences

"Manipulable" is frequently used to describe objects or situations that can be controlled or influenced with ease, suggesting an element of vulnerability or susceptibility. Whereas "manipulatable," though carrying a similar meaning, is less common in everyday usage and may appear more in technical or formal contexts.
"Manipulable" often appears in psychological, social, and technological discussions, highlighting how attitudes, devices, or data can be shaped or adjusted. On the other hand, "manipulatable" might be used specifically to emphasize the capability of being manipulated, particularly in discussions about materials or systems.
In terms of connotation, "manipulable" might carry a slightly negative undertone, suggesting exploitation or deceit. In contrast, "manipulatable" can be neutral, focusing purely on the ability to be manipulated without implying moral judgement.
Regarding linguistic preference, "manipulable" is more likely to be recognized and understood in casual conversation. Meanwhile, "manipulatable" may require more context or clarification due to its less frequent use.
Both terms derive from the verb "manipulate," but "manipulable" is generally preferred for its brevity and familiarity, whereas "manipulatable" might be chosen for technical accuracy or stylistic variation.

Comparison Chart


Easily controlled or influenced
Capable of being manipulated

Common Usage

More common, especially in casual speech
Less common, more formal or technical


Often negative, suggesting exploitation
Neutral, technical

Linguistic Preference

Preferred for brevity and familiarity
Used for stylistic variation or technical accuracy

Example Contexts

Psychological influence, technological control
Material properties, systems engineering

Compare with Definitions


Easily influenced.
The young audience is particularly manipulable by media.


Subject to influence.
Market trends are highly manipulatable by news reports.


Flexible in use.
This tool is manipulable across different platforms.


Adaptable for use.
The robot's functions are readily manipulatable.


Prone to control.
The software proved to be highly manipulable, accommodating various custom features.


Amenable to change.
The policy terms are manipulatable based on stakeholder feedback.


Susceptible to adjustment.
His opinions are quite manipulable with the right arguments.


Capable of being manipulated.
The data is easily manipulatable through the new software.


Vulnerable to deceit.
Manipulable individuals often fall victim to scams.


Open to modification.
The structure's design is manipulatable to meet changing needs.


Possible to manipulate
A manipulable lever.
A manipulable populace.


To move, arrange, operate, or control by the hands or another body part or by mechanical means, especially in a skillful manner
She manipulated the lights to get just the effect she wanted.


Suitable for, or able to be subjected to manipulation.


To influence or manage shrewdly or deviously
He manipulated public opinion in his favor.


Gullible or susceptible to persuasion.


To tamper with or falsify for personal gain
Tried to manipulate stock prices.


Easily managed (controlled or taught or molded);
Tractable young minds
Gold is tractable
The natives...being...of an intelligent tractable disposition


(Medicine) To handle and move in an examination or for therapeutic purposes
Manipulate a joint.
Manipulate the position of a fetus during delivery.


Suitable for, or able to be subjected to manipulation.


Gullible or susceptible to persuasion.

Common Curiosities

Are "manipulable" and "manipulatable" interchangeable in technical contexts?

While they can be used interchangeably in some technical contexts, "manipulatable" might be preferred for its technical precision.

Is "manipulable" more common than "manipulatable"?

Yes, "manipulable" is more commonly used than "manipulatable."

What does manipulatable mean?

Manipulatable means capable of being manipulated or modified.

Can both "manipulable" and "manipulatable" have negative connotations?

"Manipulable" often has a negative connotation, implying exploitation, whereas "manipulatable" is typically neutral.

How do the origins of "manipulable" and "manipulatable" affect their use?

Both terms stem from the verb "manipulate," but "manipulable" is older and more ingrained in the language, making it more familiar and widely accepted across various discourses.

Can the use of "manipulable" vs. "manipulatable" change the perception of a sentence?

Yes, using "manipulable" might imply a more immediate and direct ability to influence, whereas "manipulatable" can introduce a technical or calculated tone.

What does manipulable mean?

Manipulable refers to something that is easily controlled or influenced.

In what contexts might you use "manipulatable"?

"Manipulatable" is suitable for discussions about materials, scientific experiments, or engineering systems where the emphasis is on the ability to alter or adjust properties or functionalities.

Which term is more suitable for academic writing?

In academic writing, "manipulatable" might be preferred for its specificity and formal tone, especially in scientific and technical discussions.

In what contexts might you use "manipulable"?

"Manipulable" is often used in contexts involving social influence, psychological factors, or technological settings where control and adaptability are key topics.

Is there a difference in the complexity of use between "manipulable" and "manipulatable"?

"Manipulable" is simpler and more straightforward, making it easier to use and understand, while "manipulatable" might seem more complex due to its less frequent usage.

Are there any synonyms that can replace "manipulable" and "manipulatable" without changing the meaning?

Synonyms like "adjustable," "modifiable," or "influential" can sometimes replace "manipulable" or "manipulatable" depending on the context.

What are the pitfalls of using these terms incorrectly in communication?

Misusing these terms can lead to misunderstandings about the extent and nature of control or influence being discussed, potentially misleading the audience.

How can understanding the difference between "manipulable" and "manipulatable" improve communication?

Knowing when to use each term can enhance clarity and precision in communication, especially in fields where the nuances of influence and control are crucial.

How does the audience's familiarity with these terms affect their use?

If the audience is not familiar with "manipulatable," it might lead to confusion or misinterpretation, making "manipulable" a safer choice in less technical or general audiences.

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Author Spotlight

Written by
Tayyaba Rehman
Tayyaba Rehman is a distinguished writer, currently serving as a primary contributor to As a researcher in semantics and etymology, Tayyaba's passion for the complexity of languages and their distinctions has found a perfect home on the platform. Tayyaba delves into the intricacies of language, distinguishing between commonly confused words and phrases, thereby providing clarity for readers worldwide.
Co-written by
Fiza Rafique
Fiza Rafique is a skilled content writer at, where she meticulously refines and enhances written pieces. Drawing from her vast editorial expertise, Fiza ensures clarity, accuracy, and precision in every article. Passionate about language, she continually seeks to elevate the quality of content for readers worldwide.

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