- Irrelevant Words Trigger an Attentional Blink
- Experimental Psychology
- Volume | Issue number
- 57 | 4
- Pages (from-to)
- Number of pages
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Psychology Research Institute (PsyRes)
It has been argued that salient distractor items displayed during rapid serial visual presentation (RSVP) trigger an attentional blink (AB) when they share features with the target item. Here we demonstrate that salient distractor words induce an AB independently of feature overlap with the target. In two experiments a color-highlighted irrelevant word preceded a target by a variable lag in an RSVP series of false font strings. Target identification was reduced at short relative to long temporal lags between the distractor word and the target, irrespective of feature sharing with the distractor word. When the target shared features with the distractor word, target accuracy was reduced across all lags. Accordingly, feature sharing between the distractor word and the target did not amplify the AB, but had an additive effect on attentional capture by the distractor word.
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