i think emulation as many others things here pointed to and others not entered in the discussion are just luxury goods... well is there something that is not? air? not even that. television is another instrument you need to display a third part work and you are charged for both. everithing has a kind of price even if it's not on money. the point is that we put conventionally limits to our perceptions and we say: ok this i'm going to pay for, no that i will not spend a dime for.
this case is not different for me. the maker of a no matter what work may charge is piece of what he does think is reasonable for his time, fatigue, whatever. that does not imply it has to be money. for instance, no matter what were the expectations of tony wilen, he gets repayed in kinda of fame-affection-respect for winuae. everything in a society is a commerce.
to the ones of you thinking that this of emulation is a different case, i say: i understand that most of the stuff that is played now wouldn't be enjoyed at all if not of the work coders have done on emulation programs; tons of code lines written 20, 10 years ago would be lost to the masses. long gone games and even the ones no more under redistribuition prohibition (idsa and whatever) would be unaccessible. so what? is the enjoyment you take fby playin an old game to be considered somewhat of second class just for the time passed from its conceivement? so that any effort to make it again happen would be just an unmeritory and unimportant doin?
the point is: you want to work for make other people exercise. that's all and doing that they take their enjoyment. you take your own , by proving your skill at solving the problem that in this case is program engineering and succeding.. you want to charge too your work for money? ok do it who can really blame you? you are giving it for free because you want to take it to the most large array and number of people? ok you'll have your repay alsoo in this. fine.
as much i'm not going to pay money for emulation, not even for winuae, nor for maintaining the sites that allow spreading it, not for groups that maintain it ordered (as tosec), and this is my choice, i find a little hypocritical to state that it is WRONG to do as the coders that want money for their emus.
please mind that i've spoken mine as i'm very interested in that kind of society language but i care little for the things that are traded by it... and i'm sorry if i can't explain myself better in english.