Judging from comments under articles about the cuts, some readers are interpreting the action as equivalent to the first step in the slow erosion of pay that ended with the elimination of base airline commissions in 2002. There are similarities, but there are also important differences. Airlines, in aggregate, were in dire straits overall in 1995 (in aggregate, they lost money each year from 1990 through 1993, and they barely squeaked out 0.4% profit in 1994), but Marriott says it is reacting specifically to a significant rise -- characterized to me by Brian King, Marriott's global officer of digital, distribution, revenue management and global sales, as "alarming" - in costs associated directly with meetings. Travel Weekly's sister publication Business Travel News cited a report compiled by hotel benchmarking company Kalibri Labs and the auditing and consulting firm PwC. It stated that, across all U.S. hotel companies, pre-event meetings costs associated with sales amounted to 35% of room revenue, and third-party commissions of $1.4 billion accounting for 4.3% of pre-event costs. Get the full story at Travel Weekly Read also "Some see Marriott rate cut as step toward tiered commissions"