It's not a marketing decision at all. It's a business decision - "Our target market is beginners." Now, I'm going to disagree with you that their decisions have been bad ones. In fact, I'm willing to go on record as saying that MyISAM is an excellent engine for beginners. There is very little administration required and its defaults are extremely well-chosen, even those brought forward due to backwards compatibility. Plus, it's well-optimized for the types of queries that beginners tend to make (such as SELECT COUNT(*) FROM table1).
Now, it sucks when stuff goes wrong. That sort of thing is what you need experts for. Experts, in general, will want to customize. All of a sudden, defaults matter less and less. See the progression?
My criteria for good software:
- Does it work?
- Can someone else come in, make a change, and be reasonably certain no bugs were introduced?