I admit it’s old news that JTB doesn’t intuitively equal K (50 years old this year in the Western tradition, about 1200 years old if you follow the Indo-Tibetan tradition), but if anyone still wants empirical confirmation, a little more is available here, in a paper co-authored with psychologists Valerie San Juan and Raymond A. Mar, forthcoming in Cognition.
We looked at a variety of Gettier cases (like the Russell/Scheffler stopped clock case) and at “Skeptical Pressure” cases (in which it’s mentioned that clocks are sometimes broken, and that although the clock was working the agent didn’t double-check this). We found that laypeople do tend to have the intuitive reaction that these are not cases of knowledge, despite evaluating them as cases of justified true belief. Unsurprisingly, but to my great relief, we didn’t find significant variation correlated with gender or ethnicity.
An earlier study in Cognition had suggested that laypeople only have the knowledge-denying response for false lemma Gettier cases, but we found the effect robust for both those cases and fake-barn type cases. The earlier study used a narrow range of cases of one particular type, in which an object is replaced with an indistinguishable replica; we used a broader variety of stories.
In any event, I wanted to share my report that crawling out of the armchair doesn’t necessarily leave one with the sense that it needs to be set on fire.