People who consider it that way does not clearly know about PHP itslef.
PHP is a server-side scripting language designed for web development but also used as a general-purpose programming language.
The story does not over here , there are lot of misconception about PHP spread by people who do not understand it clearly. Like PHP encourages bad programming habits and procedural oriented.
PHP has OOP too rather it is upto the programmer whether he chooses POP or OOP.
Traditionally, when talking about the difference about scripting versus programming, scripts are interpreted and programs are compiled.
In some eyes, the way you use a language makes it a scripting language (for example, game developers who develop mainly in C++ will script the objects in Lua). Again, the lines are blurred – a language can be used for a programming by one person and the same language can be used for scripting language by another.
First we need to know what a programming language is. At its minimum, a programming language is something that is read by the computer and instructs it to perform certain operations. Many people would also expect a general purpose programming language to be Turing complete. However there could be situations where a domain-specific language isn’t Turing complete but is still a useful programming language for that specific domain. Programming languages can be compiled or interpreted, and they could run on many platforms or just one specific one. Different needs require different programming languages. Clearly PHP is a programming language.
A “real” programming language would be any programming language that has at least one practical usage in the real world. Since PHP is used widely to solve real problems it easily meets this requirement for being a real programming language, although it is arguably not a particularly beautiful language.
PHP is a pragmatic language. It was created out of a specific need to be able to quickly make web pages (the name originally stood for Personal Home Pages) and the language was extended as required. Since there was no theoretical background or strong design principles driving its creation (there isn’t even a formal specification of the language) it is less clean than many other more modern languages. Features like correct handling of foreign characters / unicode characters are obviously added on afterwards and not cleanly integrated with the rest of the language. This untidiness and lack of theoretical rigour causes many people (especially academics) to dislike the language and this may be part of the reason people do not regard PHP as “real” language.
However PHP is good at what it was designed for and many sites use it, even very large sites like Facebook, Yahoo! and Wikipedi