At one point I asked myself the same question and thought why buy it when i can use the trial indefinitely or find a loophole to use it with no pop up, but it came down to I build sites freelance and make money doing so. I wouldn’t want to build a website for someone and they find a loophole into not paying me.
I will admit Sublime Text is not my only editor. I use at least 3 editors but always come back to Sublime because it is reliable and efficient. Paying for the license helps Sublime Text team make changes, encourages them to continue to make changes (cost them time and money to produce this), and provides you with tools to build most projects you run into.
I can see that some users have trouble paying the current $80 registration fee, and to those I’d say once you are able to afford and get your journey into the dev world going giving back goes a long way.
Side note, if there were ST 3 stickers that’d be cool