Drupal Overall Winner in Packt's 2007 Open Source CMS Award

Packt Publishing announced that Drupal has won their Overall 2007 Open Source Content Management System Award.

After three intense months of voting, Packt Publishing can today announce that Drupal has won the Overall 2007 Open Source CMS Award. With 18,000 votes on Packt’s website, coupled with the expert opinions from a panel of judges, Drupal succeeds Joomla! as the overall winner and receives a cheque for $5,000.

Joomla!, last year's award winner, placed second this year and was awarded $3,000. CMS Made Simple collected $2,000 with a placement in the number three spot. This year, Packt awarded open source CMS projects a total of $20,000 in prize money in five different categories.

The announcement by Packt quotes Jeff Eaton, a core developer speaking on behalf of Drupal, as saying, "We've worked hard to make Drupal as flexible, as scalable, and as accessible as possible. It's a great week for all of Open Source; the winners in every category have shown that OSS can produce powerful solutions for a wide range of needs." The announcement by Packt also reaffirms Jeff's statement that all the projects that made it as finalists should be congratulated.

The Awards were designed to recognize and reward Open Source CMS’s for their consistently high standards in what is an extremely competitive field. The result of this year’s Award confirms this quality and also suggests that there isn’t necessarily one CMS that is the best, more that there is the best one to fit an individual user’s needs and requirements.

As a judge sitting on this panel, I'll tell you that all five finalists in the Overall category brought something unique to the table to qualify them for consideration as the Overall Winner CMS category. My vote for overall winner was Drupal and consistent with the panel's decision, but I placed e107 in second and Joomla! as third place winner.

While I found the experience of sitting on the panel to be rewarding, I also found it to be personally exhausting. In order to remain as unbiased as I could in my decision making, I removed myself somewhat from some of the open source communities I normally participate in. That "stepping back" though allowed me to see other open source CMS in a better light than I had seen them before. For example, I considered e107 as the second place winner in the Overall category. However, if you take a look at my site you'll find that e107 hasn't garnered so much attention from me before (no mention of e107 between April and October of this year).

I think the lesson everyone is taking from this competition is that it is important to look beyond beyond the CMS you're using (whether open source or closed source) and see what features and benefits other CMS have to offer (whether open source or proprietary). There is a lot to learn from these management systems and by looking outside your realm you'll have a more complete picture of what information systems are all about. If in the end you decide to stay with your current CMS...that's alright but you'll still find yourself a better person for at least looking elsewhere.