Expedia Inc. apparently is flexing its ample muscle in the distribution chain as it negotiates new marketing agreements with American, Delta and Northwest, and the result is that some American and Delta content on Expedia.com have at times, at least, become missing links.

One of the issues with the three holdouts apparently relates to deals they have struck with Worldspan, which still powers a substantial portion of Expedia.com bookings, and the compensation that Expedia.com receives from the airlines and the GDS when it sells certain fare classes, including those for some international routes, through Worldspan.

This is a good example of the power of Expedia in today's travel distribution world as it competes with American Airlines for control of the distribution channel," said Richard Eastman, president and owner of The Eastman Group, a software developer and technology consultancy.

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