Re: Should we use WP/BP or another platform?
As enthusiastic as you are about WordPress, most of us are about BuddyPress, so without speaking for anyone else, my opinion is biased towards using BuddyPress for every website. My moms knitting website will use BuddyPress.
If you want users to be able to blog about their own stuff without moderation, then you want WordPressMU, because each user gets their own blog to talk about whatever they want; WHATEVER they want. That means even though your site is about fashion, that doesn’t stop them from talking about puppies.
If you want these users to be able to interact with each other, and have personalities, then you want BuddyPress.BP will allow your users to talk to each other privately, form groups to talk about things with each other, and comment on each others profiles.
The reasons NOT to use BuddyPress? At the moment there’s very little restrictive control over what people do. You can’t stop someone from putting profanity in their profile. You can’t block a user from messaging you or others. Also, the platform is still evolving as much as WordPress and bbPress are. That means that if you like to keep your website on the cutting edge, you’ll find it hard to install everything and leave it alone, as enhancements and improvements are coming through at least monthly, and so far upgrading isn’t a one click thing yet (almost though)
Those is my opinionses… Not sure how helpful they is, but if you like WordPress, you will probably see the potential of BuddyPress for what you want your website to be.