As if the power of the internet needed much endorsement, almost unknown Sheffield band Arctic Monkeys this weekend took the UK pop charts by storm, entering at number one.
Given the notorious marketing hype that surrounds most pop acts, this shouldn't have been a surprise. But this is only the band's second single [not their debut as has been widely reported] and, even last week when I Bet That You Look Good On The Dancefloor was released, awareness of their existence was, well, virtually non-existent. Outside of their hardcore internet fan base, that is.
Arctic Monkeys have been on the scene for a couple of years and built up a loyal following by making their songs freely available on their website. When A&M bods came to their gigs, fans knew all the words already, which impressed Franz Ferdinand's record company sufficiently to snap them up.
Their gigs at festivals this summer were a must-see. Even before this week's staggering commercial success, getting tickets to their concerts was all but impossible. And by the time of the single's launch, momentum was totally OTT. So much so that committed fans were buying up handfuls of the single to ensure it hit the top spot.
What's odd, though, is that iTunes has been selling previous release Fake Tales of San Francisco and the new single for 79p a track. Strangely, if you nip down your high street you're almost certain to find a physical copy of the single for less than the total cost of downloading it from the iTunes Music Store. Good business for online music sites considering the original product was being given away.