The Lost E-Mail Technique: Use of an Implicit Measure to Assess Discriminatory Attitudes Toward Two Minority Groups in Israel


Orit E. Tykocinski, New School of Psychology, Interdisciplinary Center (IDC) Herzliya, P.O. Box 167, Herzliya 46150, Israel. E-mail: or to Liad Bareket-Bojmel, Department of Psychology, Ben Gurion University, P.O. Box 653, Beer Sheva 84105, Israel. E-mail:


The effectiveness of the “lost e-mail technique” (LET) as an unobtrusive attitude measure was successfully demonstrated in 2 studies. In Study 1, we found that Israeli students were more likely to reply to a similar other than to a minority group member (an Israeli-Arab or an immigrant from the former Soviet Union). In Study 2, LET was administered to professors and administrators, and its effectiveness was compared to a more traditional self-report measure. Although professors showed less discrimination on the self-report measure than did administrators, they were nevertheless discriminative in their responses to lost e-mails. These results suggest that professors are not necessarily less prejudiced, but probably are better able to detect attitude probes and more motivated to appear unbiased.