Perception Journal Club

Motion-aftereffect-induced blindness

Motion-induced blindness (MIB) describes the occasional disappearance of salient visual objects in the presence of moving features (Y. S. Bonneh, A. Cooperman, & D. Sagi, 2001). Here we test whether motion adaptation and the ensuing motion aftereffect (MAE) are sufficient to trigger disappearance of salient targets. In three experiments, observers adapted to either rotating or static stimuli. Immediately afterwards, a static test pattern was presented consisting of a mask with texture elements and three superimposed target dots in a triangular arrangement. Observers reported dot disappearance and reappearance. The results clearly show that illusory motion in a static test pattern, following motion adaptation, promotes the disappearance of target dots. Furthermore, disappearance is modulated by the depth relationship between test pattern and targets, increasing for targets placed stereoscopically behind the test pattern. We conclude that MIB is influenced by perceived relative motion between depth-segregated features.