[consulting] Drupal considerd dangerous

Kieran Lal kieran at civicspacelabs.org
Thu Dec 21 19:18:09 UTC 2006

On Dec 21, 2006, at 10:22 AM, Evan Leibovitch wrote:

> Bill Fitzgerald wrote:
>> To me, this post did a great job stating the obvious: Drupal isn't  
>> for everyone. It's a great tool/CMS/development platform/widget de  
>> jour -- while it can do a lot, it's not always the best choice,  
>> or, for some organizations, a logical choice.
> While I agree with your assessment, I would hardly consider that
> "stating the obvious" -- it's certainly not obvious to newcomers, the
> very kind of HTML-phobic would-be Web publishers Drupal is trying to
> appeal to.
> Look no further than http://drupal.org/handbook/is-drupal-right-for- 
> you
> which provides the official and definitive answer to "is Drupal right
> for you?"

I am the author of that page.

> There are no qualifications or "it's not always the best choice" type
> honest comments anywhere to be found.

By targeting specific uses we tried to highlight it's strengths.   
Highlighting weaknesses is not very useful as it's frequently the  
limitations of the users ability to use a tool that are the real  

> Small businesses are explicitly mentioned as a target group for whom
> Drupal is the right answer.
> In fact, the page offers no realistic appraisal of what Drupal doesn't
> do well, which is also what people coming to such a page are  
> looking for.
What do you suggest?

> As a consequence, people will inevitably be disappointed. The problem
> with laying down such exuberant hype is the difficulty to live up  
> to it.
> No amount of wishful thinking here will enable a non-IT-savvy
> small-business owner to maintain their own Drupal site of any
> sophistication.

Have you got some specifics?

> Suggesting that this is possible, as the above webpage
> does, goes beyond mere hype into the realm of severe pseudo-marketing
> excess.

In the small business section I listed the following skills as  

evaluator, end-user, administrator, site developer (to a limited extent)

What additional skills do you feel are needed?

> It's easy to offer up case studies of successes. It's far more
> difficult, and far less sexy -- yet likely far more productive -- to
> engage in some forensic study of the failures.
> Drupal's being seen as a failure because it was expected to do  
> something
> it couldn't do is a communications problem. And Drupal, despite its
> massive amounts of documentation, its endless discussions about
> brochures and its very reason for existence, still suffers badly in  
> the
> realm of communications. IMO, the Drupal community has yet to grasp  
> the
> fact that "what you want to say" is not the same as "what your  
> audience
> wants to hear", and a large gap exists between those two in this  
> world.
>> However, if a start-up goes south, there are probably a lot of  
>> factors at play beyond the issue of a cms.
> Very true. But if Drupal -- because it failed expectations and/or  
> became
> a completely unexpected resource suck -- was a contributing factor,  
> that
> is extremely important information to know moving forward.


> - Evan
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