Original Story (published Oct 26): Some consumers who purchased Valve's Orange Box from vendors located outside of their home country--mainly in an attempt to save on cheaper products--have recently reported that their otherwise legally-obtained games have since been deactivated by Valve's Steam software for territory violation.
Talking with Shacknews, Valve's Doug Lombardi now says that the Steam software is merely carrying out this function by design.
"Valve uses Steam for territory control to make sure products authorized for use in certain territories are not being distributed and used outside of those territories," said Lombardi.
"In this case, a Thai website was selling retail box product keys for Thailand to people outside of Thailand. Since those keys are only for use in Thailand, people who purchased product keys from the Thai website are not able to use those product keys in other territories."
So are users who bought the game outside of their own country completely out of luck? It appears so, as Lombardi recommends purchasing a legal copy from a local shop in order to keep playing.
"Some of these users have subsequently purchased a legal copy after realizing the issue and were having difficulty removing the illegitimate keys from their Steam accounts," added Lombardi. "Anyone having this problem should contact Steam Support to have the Thai key removed from their Steam account."