I completely understand being an audiophile. Being insufferable? Not so much.
Like any real-world resource, if it's rare it's worth more and is "special." That said, I don't understand hoarding the recordings. Back in the 2000s I transcribed a ton of Regina songs...not because I wanted to be elite and have sheet music (I couldn't even play piano then), but because the Regina community wanted access to sheets. While this is an apple-to-oranges argument, I don't see how Regina fans wouldn't want to help other Regina fans.
I wrote my senior thesis on Regina's views on Werktreue. She said her songs "have nothing to do with me. I'm just a name. I'm either useful or not." She's also said "...it's a very hard life I've been living the past couple of years. I hate to say that, because there's a reason why you try to make music—you want to put it out there for people to hear..."
Regina makes her music for fans to hear. She openly encourages recording during her performances (with the rare exception of the "Dulce"/"OMTWF"/'99 Demo Tape moments when she asked them not to be shared). We know she doesn't like her early albums, but she still wants us to hear them. This couldn't be more evident than in the fact that most of her albums contain old "live only" songs ("you always feel some sort of relief when you record one of the older songs because [it’s] like, 'oh, you've been patiently waiting your turn.'")
In fact, I think Regina herself would look down on these "elite" music hoarders. When asked about the criticism she received for rerecording "Samson," she said “I'm very unimpressed by purists. I'm like, 'Would you be the person in the room that would boo when Dylan went electric?' I know I wouldn't.” I'm pretty sure she'd be unimpressed with the hoarding.
Heck, she even says her recordings are meant to be shared. “I will have this moment of my life captured, and not just in my own memories, but in a way that can be shared with others.”
The first time I met her, I even asked if she cared I was transcribing her music and sharing it in that Yahoo group. She said she thought it was great that her fans were sharing her music and she loved that we were doing it. I can only assume the demos could fall under the same thinking.
I'm not trying to be a jerk, I'm just trying to understand why there as to be an inner circle of fans. Trading mp3 files like precious medals is fine and good, but I'd love to have some insight on the process.