Open Source software has innumerable examples that prove by
existence that the concept can work. Hell, I'm not even
going to insult you by giving the typical Ziff-Davis
freelancer list of successful free software projects.
However, there hasn't been equal support for the idea of
Open Content, the extension of Open Source into the world
of documentation, literature, music and art. Maybe
opencontent.org will change that.
There are a ton of reasons that software developers write code that don't have
anything to do with money: for fame, for personal fulfilment, for payback to the
community, for the pure joy of creation. Open Source software can address these
needs of the developer, perhaps at the sacrifice of financial ones. Considering
that so many artists and writers have similar motivations, it only makes sense
that the Open ______ concept would attract them.
opencontent.org is pretty sparse right now. They have a nifty animated-GIF
logo, but that's not going to carry them too far. It's also fairly sparse on
theory. But the very BEST part of the site, I think, is the very cool "Open
Content License," weirdly acronymed to "OPL." It's got practically everything
that a free content license would need, nicely balancing the needs of the
information creator and the information user.
Anyways, if you're interested in Open Source, you should check out Open Content.