They were putting copies of Julian Assange: The Unauthorised Autobiography in the window of Waterstone's this morning when I arrived to buy a copy, which was cool -- I really thought that was no more than a movie cliché. Inside, half a dozen copies sold in 10 minutes -- most of the purchasers looked like newsroom interns -- and a film crew from German state television was sharking around interviewing people.

Since no-one buying the book was willing to participate, they were finding casual browsers and offering to buy them a copy. When I arrived, they had cornered some gormless young man who had been, as is the case for most bookshop habitues, simply hiding from the day.