Show Reference: "The role of visual-auditory "compellingness" in the ventriloquism effect: Implications for transitivity among the spatial senses"

The role of visual-auditory “compellingness” in the ventriloquism effect: Implications for transitivity among the spatial senses In Perception & Psychophysics, Vol. 30, No. 6. (1981), pp. 557-564, doi:10.3758/bf03202010 by David H. Warren, Robert B. Welch, Timothy J. McCarthy
    abstract = {A magnitude estimation response procedure was used to evaluate the strength of visualauditory intersensory bias effects under conditions of spatial discrepancy. Maj or variables were the cognitive compellingness of the stimulus situation and instructions as to the unity or duality of the perceptual event. With a highly compelling stimulus situation and single-event instructions, subjects showed a very high visual bias of audition, a significant auditory bias of vision, and a sum of bias effects that indicated that their perception was fully consonant with the assumption of a single perceptual event. This finding reopens the possibility that the spatial modalities function as a transitive system, an outcome that Pick, Warren, and Hay (1969) had expected but did not obtain. Furthermore, the results support the model for intersensory interaction proposed by Welch and Warren (1980) with respect to the susceptibility of intersensory bias effects to several independent variables. Finally, a new means of assessing intersensory bias effects by the use of spatial separation threshold was demonstrated.},
    author = {Warren, David H. and Welch, Robert B. and McCarthy, Timothy J.},
    booktitle = {Perception \& Psychophysics},
    doi = {10.3758/bf03202010},
    keywords = {attention, audio, biology, semantic, ventriloquism-effect, visual},
    number = {6},
    pages = {557--564},
    posted-at = {2014-05-07 15:28:57},
    priority = {2},
    publisher = {Springer-Verlag},
    title = {The role of visual-auditory  ” compellingness” in the ventriloquism effect: Implications for transitivity among the spatial senses},
    url = {},
    volume = {30},
    year = {1981}

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Stimuli which are non-predictive in a task—like localized stimuli in one modality which are non-predictive of the position of the target in another modality—can enhance performance in valid instances of that task—like detecting targets which by coincidence are where the non-predictive stimulus was.

This demonstrates the existence of exogenous attention.

The ``unity assumption'' is the hypothesized unconscious assumption (or the belief) of an observer that stimuli in different modalities representing a single cross-sensory object.

In one of their experiments, Warren et al. had their subjects localize visual or auditory components of visual-auditory stimuli (videos of people speaking and the corresponding sound). Stimuli were made compelling' by playing video and audio in sync anduncompelling' by introducing a temporal offset.

They found that their subjects performed as under a unity assumptions'' when told they would perceive cross-sensory stimuli, and when the stimuli were `compelling' and under a lowunity assumption'' when they were told there could be separate auditory or visual stimuli and/or the stimuli were made `uncompelling'.