Free content, like free software, is about freedom — the freedom for anyone to use, study and apply, change and redistribute the work, for any purpose. “Non-commercial” isn’t free enough to be called free. “No derivatives” isn’t free enough to be called free. As Brianna Laugher notes, “The right to fork that is created by free content licensing keeps the parent organisations honest.”
The big news here is that the choice of a free licence furthers the public expectation that educational content (Wikipedia, Citizendium, Encyclopedia of Earth, Open Site) will be under a proper free content license. Scholarpedia and about.com need not apply. Google needs to think carefully.
(I also get a thank you at the end of the Citizendium license essay. Any help I provided in making this choice happen, I’m extremely pleased to have provided.)
Citizendium and Wikipedia, or at least the more foolish members thereof, have their periodic pissy bitchfights. But we’re on the same side in deep and important ways.
(Is Citizendium good for anything? Well, their history of the BSD Daemon is the best article I’ve seen on the subject. There’s excellent stuff there worth linking people to.)