Huge Thanks! to everyone that nominated us.
mojoPortal is a finalist again in the Best Other CMS category in this years CMS Awards sponsored by Packt Publishing ("other" means not based on PHP).
Last year we won this category but we were the only project based on ASP.NET in the group of contenders. This year there are 2 other .NET projects in the finalists including the dominant and much better known DotNetNuke project. I think last year this award was not really on their radar, but since Packt published a book on DotNetNuke skinning I'm sure their project team is paying attention this year. If they rally their community they will trounce us in terms of votes. DotNetNuke is also a finalist in the Best Overall category and to some extent that indicates they have already beat us.
To the extent that the award is based on current popularity it seems not very likely that we can win this year, though we did beat out Plone last year and they are also much better known than mojoPortal. Our best hope is to do as much as we can to get a lot of votes and to do well in the phase of the contest where we will be evaluated by a panel of judges.
So you may ask why is DotNetNuke so well known and so dominant? The answer is they had a 2 year head start and they got a lot of help and continue to get a lot of help from Microsoft. They have their forum integrated into the hugely popular Microsoft ASP.NET site which I'm sure drives a huge amount of traffic to their site and has been very helpful for them in building their brand. Microsoft has also recognized many of their core developers with MVP awards.
I certainly don't begrudge them their success or the support they get from Microsoft. I just want people to consider that popularity doesn't neccessarily mean you have a better product. You can have a better product and still fail to get your message out there, especially if you can't get access to the same valuable promotional mechanisms and support that your competitors have available to them. I hope one day to emulate their success and am glad we made it to the finalist stage again this year. One irony may turn out to be that if DotNetNuke brings a lot of attention to this years award, it may actually help us because some of the people who go to vote for them may read about the other finalists and this may help raise awareness of mojoPortal in the .NET community.
mojoPortal has grown its community organically in spite of not having any love from Microsoft (though we wish we would get some support from them). When I inquired about getting a mojoPortal forum on the ASP.NET site I pretty much got the brush off. Its very difficult for .NET developers to find out about mojoPortal and though we have a growing and supportive community, only a small percent of the huge ASP.NET community has ever even heard of mojoPortal.
I said it last year, and I'll say it again this year, we are the underdog going into this competition. Its going to be very difficult to win and every vote will matter so please vote for us and help us spread the word about mojoPortal!
If you like you can also nominate me for the CMS MVP Award.