Yes but if you download a copy and then send the author money when you have it ? I always hope people would acknowledge exposure doesn’t pay the bills 😥
The donation model is indeed used by some authors, and it does work in some cases. If it's offered outright, that's fine.
Of course, one has to remember that everyone involved needs to get paid: the publisher, whom the author willingly signed with (see again my article explaining everyone involved there), the illustrators or graphics designers, the bookseller (if relevant), etc, etc. They all deserve to make back the investment of time and money they put in.
It's a legal gray area, but I've seen cases where someone used a technically illegal copy of a book they had a legitimate immediate need for, and then legally bought a copy as soon as they could afford it. It's not ideal, but I suppose this is reasonably acceptable, since the immediate end result is the same. Still, it's a slippery slope, so I don't want to give a carte-blanche on that.
We're a place where coders share, stay up-to-date and grow their careers.
We strive for transparency and don't collect excess data.