The facing bias in biological motion perception: structure, kinematics, and body parts.Atten Percept Psychophys. 2011 Jan; 73(1):130-43.AP
Depth-ambiguous point-light walkers (PLWs) elicit a facing bias: Observers perceive a PLW as facing toward them more often than as facing away (Vanrie,Dekeyser, & Verfaillie, Perception, 33, 547-560, 2004). While the facing bias correlates with the PLW's perceived gender (Brooks et al., Current Biology, 18, R728-R729, 2008; Schouten, Troje, Brooks, van der Zwan, & Verfaillie, Attention, Perception, & Psychophysics, 72,1256-1260, 2010), it remains unclear whether the change in perceived in-depth orientation is caused by a change in perceived gender. In Experiment 1, we show that structural and kinematic stimulus properties that lead to the same changes in perceived gender elicit opposite changes in perceived in-depth orientation, indicating that the relation between perceived gender and in-depth orientation is not causal. The results of Experiments 2 and 3 further suggest that the perceived in-depth orientation of PLWs is strongly affected by locally acting stimulus properties. The facing bias seems to be induced by stimulus properties in the lower part of the PLW.