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Who cares what David Beckham says?

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Lewis Wiltshire | 15:36 UK time, Friday, 30 March 2007

I do - which is why we made this the top story on the BBC Sport website this morning, and also why it stayed there through the whole of the morning, until it was knocked off the top slot by the live cricket.

But someone who uses our 606 website made this point: "Why have the BBC made this the top story on Sport today? So Beckham's got his opinion, so what?"

It's a fair point. These things are subjective. Spend even the smallest amount of time in our newsroom and you will hear debates about what we 'lead' on.

Last night in London all eyes were on David BeckhamIn this case, you would have to acknowledge that England's footballers and their difficult week is currently a hot story, leading every newspaper, radio bulletin and website for days. David Beckham is the former captain, cast out by Steve McClaren , and so his views on the current predicament are relevant. Plus, Beckham was speaking the previous evening just after he was given a lifetime achievement award at a glittering awards ceremony, so he was even more personally newsworthy than normal, if that's possible.

That's my view. You might tell me that Beckham is a has-been, yesterday's news. Not good enough to be in the England team anymore, why should we care what he says? He didn't even say anything that controversial. He just said his old mates would qualify for a tournament. If he'd said they wouldn't qualify, now that would be news. You might tell me that and it would be an equally valid viewpoint.

So we decided to go with it, and I stand by it. Ultimately it's not the biggest deal in the world - anyone who just wanted to know what was happening at the Cricket World Cup, for instance, and didn't care about Beckham, could just go straight to our cricket section and bypass the Sport front page. In fact, at some point in the future I imagine everyone who uses our site will build their own Sport front page only displaying the stories they are interested in. We're a little way off providing that facility, but increasingly personalised web pages is undoubtedly the way the industry is headed.

In the meantime, before we reach this geek heaven, I'd be interested to know how newsworthy you think Beckham is. Do you hang on his every word? Or could you not care less? Having your thoughts might help me the next time we debate such matters in the office.

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