Mike mentioned on a mailing list that he “can think of at least 5 startups that were seriously hurt by using Drupal”.
I have to agree, I can think of at least three cases.
But you could say that that’s more a case of startups being hurt by technical incompetence because they thought they could use an open source CMS as the basis for their company. Not to say there aren’t any successful companies using Drupal, but if you’re building anything else than a content company (which you could probably run on any cms), you’d be foolish to start by using Drupal. That’s just what I think.
Why? Drupal keeps evolving to solve a lot of different problems, it tries to be a swiss army knife. You’ll probably use 20% of Drupal, which means you have 80% cruft (which 20% can be different for everyone), and you’ll probably only have 20% of your needs addressed by Drupal, which means you’ll have to hack around the 80% cruft to get your 80% needs addressed. It’ll just keep frustrating you.
I call this Peter’s “generic-cms-warning 80-80 rule”.