Valve can do no wrong... right?


Valve, fortunately, has managed to stay on the good side of gamers throughout its existence, despite gamers' initial mistrust of Steam and its built-in DRM upon Half-Life 2's initial release. Valve can afford to make risky marketing moves like this because it's taken the time to build a solid reputation with the community based on trust -- not to mention the immense generosity of some of Steam's promotions.

A lesson to be learned for other companies then: pay attention to what the community wants. Build trust. And be sure to reward your customers' loyalty, never take it for granted -- because you might not always have it.