Testing the time for writing sample programs is
an interesting and practical metric.
But it depends as much
on the programmer abilities than on the language tested.
I am confident that perl expressivity permits to write good
programs quite fast but I am well aware that many people
don't even know about perl5 features (complex data structure handling including OO).
The language quality is one thing, the general level of its programmer communauty another. I hope that perl mongers and monks are instrumental in raising awareness of good perl programming practices.
Perl has not any
signifiant marketting and logistic strengh behind it so grass roots movements are the only way.