Library > Search > "Masked Emotions" - Measuring Implicit and Explicit Attitudes towards stigmatizing products (dust masks)

Article options

    Login is required to download this article. You can register via the register page.

"Masked Emotions" - Measuring Implicit and Explicit Attitudes towards stigmatizing products (dust masks)

Kristof Vaes , Pieter Jan Stappers , Achiel Standaert , Jeroen Vaes

New products have an emotional impact on their users and observing bystanders. This is especially true for protective and bodily near products, such as dust masks. Our research started from the hypothesis that reactions to dust masks are generally negative and that people have a spontaneous avoidance reaction. Not only the thoughtful and deliberative reactions, but also the initial unconscious and involuntary reactions, can be very confronting and emotionally challenging towards the stigmatized person. This experimental study aims to test whether the generic distinction between models without dust masks and models with dust masks is sufficient to trigger elementary motor tendencies associated with approach and avoidance, which could serve as an indicator for the product acceptance process. A questionnaire was presented to compare participants? test reactions with their rational and explicit responses. The approach versus avoidance measurements showed a faster approach towards the mask stimuli. Although this result is in contrast with our initial expectations, and to a certain extent with the explicit judgments that were recorded, the results between the different mask-types did provide valuable information. Once we manage to improve our control over the intervening variables, we believe that designers can strongly benefit from this simple and straightforward experimental approach.


inclusive design, stigma, product acceptance, semantics