Actually, you just weren't paying attention; the stuff that's
currently getting attention is actually a lot tamer than some of the
messages I've seen in BSD/GPL license flamewars going back several
years (particularly John Dyson's "contributions" from the BSD side),
or more recently the Qt license stuff.
Many (most?) productive developers manage to just avoid those
arguments, and do what they like, but even on the level of pure
technology, flamewars happen. For instance, a few years ago, the GGI
project sparked a seriously divisive flamewar about technical
directions for video support in the Linux kernel.
So, I've been watching the freeware scene for a while, and I really
don't see more discord than I have in the past. The only difference
is that before, it was all in the family because no one outside the
family thought it had any significance. Now, it's a publicity
problem, but I think the solution is more likely to educate people
about what it really does (and more importantly, doesn't) mean.