(@jb261 - I have replied to your post but it is more aimed at the forum in general - Just thought I'd let you know!)
Does Joplin need to be competitive? Could it not be argued that Joplin doesn't have to compete or meet "feature parity", in whole or in part, with any other software as all it needs to be is Joplin. It does not need to try to acquire any other apps "market share" because it's not in the market in the first place. It's more a single dev project with that person's approach to a particular task and if people like what they see they get involved. If they don't they stick with what they are familiar with or find something else. I see Joplin as being only concerned with its software and its method. It has no need to find ways into a user's wallet. In short, it has different driving factors. Of course if it can "steal" great ideas it should!
Sophisticated does not always mean better. I moved to Joplin when Evernote thought it was getting ever so sophisticated but in fact made simple editing like cut & paste (a basic function) a right pain in the ....
I cannot argue that financial support can only be useful but I believe that a larger userbase actually benefits Joplin more by attracting those that can code to add code, thereby giving Laurent a chance to get the feeling back in his fingertips after years of typing...
With that in mind I also think that due to how quickly Joplin moves forward some think that there is a large core team of devs continually working on this project. I did. There is certainly a core but it is also apparently not large. I am not sure if GitHub is showing here what I think it is showing but I'll link to it anyway. This is basically a single person's project which others help with.
I have spent a lot of time on this forum and seen feature requests that I was convinced would not gain any traction with @laurent only for him to have the feature in place by the next release. I have also seen feature requests that go nowhere because it is not a route he wishes to take with his project. From what I have seen I cannot say that Laurent is anything but reasonable and is more than happy to consider any well-argued request (and some quite cryptic ones as well!).
I think it's great that so many enthusiastic people come here to make suggestions that they feel can improve Joplin. However frustration can creep in if those people feel that they are not being listened to. However, recently I was pushing for a minor change that was apparently not going to happen. After some time it was introduced, so if an idea is not taken up now it may still be in the future.
But the person suggesting may think the feature is an obvious "must have" or a "deal breaker" and Laurent does not and that is where we come to the crux of the matter, it's his choice what he spends his time doing. I find it easier to accept "defeat" by seeing Laurent as the project's Benevolent Dictator for Life (BDFL) who, like it or not, has the final binding say on any matter. Never spiteful but based on practicalities and personal opinion. (As an aside, when it comes to "telling it as it is" I consider @tessus the project's "Linus Torvalds" - only tessus is slightly more blunt... )
@jb261 also there's nothing wrong with being the passenger and not the driver because occasionally the passenger, with a few words, stops the driver from falling asleep at the wheel!