It was a challenge to break the latest code, to spread the first working version etc. If you got something you'd done to spread around the world it was a very cool feeling.
I never saw it as elitism, though, but I once was asked by a kid for my autograph!
I went to computer shows and tried to blag early betas etc. It was the done thing.
You might not like the illegal side of the scene, Amigaboy, but you must realise that if it wasn't for this trading then the "scene" would probably not have existed.
Intros and demos would not have developed as far as they did/have, contact among fans would not have been so large and this very forum would probably not exist (in this form).