"In the world of the internet the opposite appears to be true, where the mantra that no one has the right to charge is championed. Everything is free if you want to take it. "
I don't think that there's an expectation that everything is free. I've just got done featuring a handful of authors on my site, several of whom do sell and make money from their work in some form or another. I do not think the internet audience feels entitled. They do, however, need to be convinced that something is worth paying for, which is why authors who do give away things for free tend to do better (compared to the many self-published author who charges $15 for a book of unverifiable quality.) Could we not rather say that authors of commercial publishers feel entitled to charge an arbitrary amount for books that are often not worth it?
There is a difference between reciprocity and pricing. Yes with reciprocity there is an expectation that sometime in the future a gift will be returned. So, yes, reciprocity is not just selfless charity or sacrifice. But this is much different than pricing which is setting a (usually pretty arbitrary) number on goods or services and withholding said goods and services until this (again, arbitrary) number is met. Reciprocity is based on trust. Pricing is based on mostly arbitrary rules assigning a number to the value of an object. Not saying either one is bad. In a large scale state society, pricing is really the only efficient way of doing business because trust is shaky in large groups.
"would you be okay with me receiving all the benefits of gifting culture while personally refusing to return the favor"
--is extremely unlikely to happen in a gifting culture (as seen [traditionally] in groups such as the Semai or Batak and some Native American cultures.) In gifting cultures people who take, take, take, without providing anything generally get shunned (this is of course excluding incidents of taking by violence in which case it's not a gifting culture so much as a military state.) Then there is no trust or friendship or cooperation. Pricing, of course, does not require trust or friendship or cooperation. Reciprocity does. When a person does not cooperate, it breaks down--at least for the untrusted party.
The idea of a gifting culture is not some idealistic, utopian notion of people giving things away happily and freely because they're full of love and rainbows. It is not necessarily better, but it is a different way of doing things.