It turns out that philosophers have mostly gotten it right in their generalizations about how "we" view knowledge in lottery cases. The folk tend to think that you don't know that your lottery ticket lost, based on the long odds ("statistical cases"); by contrast, the folk tend to think that you do know that your lottery ticket lost, based on a news report ("testimonial cases").
We also evaluate three previous explanations for why people deny knowledge in statistical cases: the justification account, the chance account, and the statistical account. None of them seems to work.
Finally, we propose a new explanation of our own, the formulaic account, according to which some (some!) people deny knowledge in statistical cases due to formulaic expression. As some evidence for this, we found that people respond differently to a conclusion that involves a lottery number as opposed to a phone number, holding all else equal. Consider this pair of cases (manipulations underlined and separated by a slash):
[Comparative Lotto/Phone] Abigail is talking with her neighbor, Stan, who is a statistician. Stan hands Abigail a bill and says, "Here is the ten dollars I owe you." Abigail looks at the bill and sees that its serial number is 5-0-6-7-4-1-6-9-8-2. Stan continues, "I made an interesting calculation. That serial number is just as likely to be Brad Pitt's mobile phone number as it is to win this week's lottery." Abigail answers, "That combination will not win this week's lottery/is not Brad Pitt's mobile number." And Abigail was exactly right: that combination was a loser/it was not Brad Pitt's number.
People are significantly more likely to ascribe knowledge in Comparative Phone than in Comparative Lotto.