Wow, that's a nice change. I actually do that a lot, buy games on sale and have them sit in my inventory for months waiting for a person's birthday. Nice that that can be automated now.
Not surprised about the limitations regarding gifting to people in other countries. I've only heard a little bit of law regarding pricing and sales and gifting between countries, and BOY, that stuff will make your head spin. I'm surprised they didn't just say you could only gift to people in the same country just to circumvent all of that awful legal mess.
Steam already allowed you to buy a gift and send it in the future. It is not something new.
What is new is that they took away the ability to buy a gift and store it for later and the ability to send it to someone via email. Now you have to choose to either add it to your own account immediately or send it immediately to someone who is currently on your friend list. You can not wait or choose later who it goes to.
I love the Steam gift system. It allows me to play Co-op games with friends who don't have the disposable income that I do.
Some people are indifferent when you buy them a game, surprisingly. But then some people are idiots too.
Well, if you give someone a game, you shouldn't necessarily be in it for their response. I mean, that attitude is somewhat "strings attached" and I didn't get that vibe with Jeff's post above. With that being said, they should at least be token appreciative. Now if it's a game they personally expressed active interest in, then yes they should absolutely be grateful. Depending on the individual, YMMV.