In this month's Drupal Watchdog magazine Nate & I wrote an article about Backdrop CMS. In that article I described all the people who work with, in, and around Drupal as the "Drupal ecosystem". I'd like to describe here, in more detail, how this ecosystem breaks down - along with some numbers and figures to back up our claims.
The 1 % rule
Let's take the blogging world as an example, but the 1% rule applies to the web at large. Only 1% of any community are the Creators (the people who write the blog posts). Just 9% of that community are the contributors (those who read the blog, and respond by adding comments of their own). The other 90 percent of that community is made of up of Lurkers (these are people who read the blog post, but are otherwise invisible to the creators).
In Drupal it's the 0.02 % rule
In Drupal, these numbers are even more extreme. Only 0.02%* of our community is involved with core development. Just 02%** of our community creates all the modules, themes, and other tools built on top of core, participates in issue queues, and attends camps and conferences. The other 98%** of the community are the silent Lurkers, using Drupal but without a voice in the direction of the project.
* Core developers: all names given attribution in Drupal's git history (gathered using Eric Duran's drupalcores script)
** Contributors: drupal.org users who have ever created either a node or a comment on drupal.org
*** Total number of people is based on downloads, assuming 1 user per download (but only counting D6 & D7 downloads)