A newly developed paradigm for studying spontaneous trait inferences (STI) was applied in 3 experiments. The authors primed dyadic stimulus behaviors involving a subject (S) and an object (O) person through degraded pictures or movies. An encoding task called for the verification of either a graphical feature or a semantic interpretation, which either fit or did not fit the primed behavior. Next, participants had to identify a trait word that appeared gradually behind a mask and that either matched or did not match the primed behavior. STI effects, defined as shorter identification latencies for matching than nonmatching traits, were stronger for S than for O traits, after graphical rather than semantic encoding decisions and after encoding failures. These findings can be explained by assuming that trait inferences are facilitated by open versus closed mindsets supposed to result from distracting (graphical) encoding tasks or encoding failures (involving nonfitting interpretations).