'Unconscious Transference' Can Be an Instance of 'Change Blindness'

Applied Cognitive Psychology, Vol. 22, pp. 605-623, 2008

UC Irvine School of Law Research Paper No. 2008-09

19 Pages Posted: 18 Sep 2008 Last revised: 12 Sep 2010

Deborah Davis

University of Nevada, Reno

Elizabeth F. Loftus

University of California, Irvine - Department of Psychology and Social Behavior; University of California, Irvine School of Law

Samuel Vanous

University of Utah

Michael Cucciare

Stanford University - School of Medicine

Date Written: September 8, 2010

Abstract

Three experiments investigated the role of 'change blindness' in mistaken eyewitness identifications of innocent bystanders to a simulated crime. Two innocent people appeared briefly in a filmed scene in a supermarket. The 'continuous innocent' (CI) walked down the liquor aisle and passed behind a stack of boxes, where upon the perpetrator emerged and stole a bottle of liquor, thereby resulting in an action sequence promoting the illusion of continuity between perpetrator and innocent. The 'discontinuous innocent' (DI) was shown immediately afterward in the produce aisle. Results revealed that: (1) more than half of participants failed to notice the change between the CI and the perpetrator, (2) among those who failed to notice the change, more misidentified the 'CI' than the 'DI', a pattern that did not hold for those who did notice the change. Participants were less likely to notice the change when they were distracted while watching the video.

Suggested Citation

Davis, Deborah and Loftus, Elizabeth F. and Vanous, Samuel and Cucciare, Michael, 'Unconscious Transference' Can Be an Instance of 'Change Blindness' (September 8, 2010). Applied Cognitive Psychology, Vol. 22, pp. 605-623, 2008; UC Irvine School of Law Research Paper No. 2008-09. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1270068

Deborah Davis

University of Nevada, Reno ( email )

Reno, NV 89557
United States

Elizabeth F. Loftus (Contact Author)

University of California, Irvine - Department of Psychology and Social Behavior ( email )

4201 Social & Behavioral Sciences Gateway
University of California, Irvine
Irvine, CA 92697-7085
United States

University of California, Irvine School of Law

401 E. Peltason Dr.
Ste. 1000
Irvine, CA 92697-1000
United States

Samuel Vanous

University of Utah

1645 E. Campus Center
Salt Lake City, UT 84112
United States

Michael Cucciare

Stanford University - School of Medicine ( email )

Stanford, CA 94305
United States
650) 493-5000 ext. 22102 (Phone)

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