Focusing on all Drupal competitors

At times, it feels like many of us in the Drupal community are a bit too focused on WordPress.

Last week I was in Europe giving a couple of presentations on Drupal: one at a technology event for executive decision makers organized by Deloitte, and the other at the Drupal Gov Days. I also had various meetings with both Drupal development companies and large scale Drupal users.

I came away feeling that Drupal is extremely hot in Europe. Plenty of companies are migrating to Drupal from enterprise content management systems like SDL Tridion, Vignette, Sitecore and Polopoly. In some situations, though, Drupal is being outsold by these vendors — we don't always win. In Europe, Drupal is also competing with other Open Source systems like Typo3 and ezPublish — we don't really encounter these in the United States.

It begs an important question. Who in the community has deep understanding of SDL Tridion, EMC Documentum, Vignette, Sitecore, Open Text (RedDot), Clickability, Autonomy Interwoven, EPiServer, Polopoly or FatWire. Who in the community knows anything but WordPress? The answer: almost no one.

While there are things we can learn from WordPress, it is not the competition. If you want to build your business and give back to Drupal, learn about some of the proprietary competition, and help large companies to migrate to Drupal. There are many organizations looking for help. There is real money to be made in this, as well. Money that can be used to improve Drupal's usability, better internationalization capabilities, and other such areas.

We can and should learn from WordPress, but let's not be blind-sided. I would love to see more people make comparisons with other competitors and share migration stories. Like that, we can learn and become better across the board.