Such is the potential for disruption to the status quo of airline distribution that normally bitter rivals are suddenly supporting one another publicly.
Today's decision in a US court to deny a request by Travelport for a preliminary injunction against American Airlines to stop the airline removing its fares and availability from Orbitz paves the way for a huge shake-up in the foodchain between airline, GDS, intermediary and consumer.
So, no surprise at all to see rival GDS Sabre Travel Network as one of the first organisations to leap to the defence of Travelport following the court ruling.
Not singling out the case or Travelport directly, but clearly reacting to the news today, Sabre Travel Network senior vice president Chris Kroeger says:
"We oppose American’s efforts to impose a costly and unproven system on travel agents and travelers. We strongly agree with the many industry and consumer groups who believe American’s actions will make it much harder and more costly for agents and consumers to easily comparison shop among airlines, which will result in increased prices for consumers.
"Sabre is part of a successful and proven system that allows travelers to efficiently and cost-effectively comparison shop across hundreds of airlines and other travel information on websites and through travel agencies."
The existing case will continue (today's ruling was simply to lift the injunction previously requested by Travelport), but the rhetoric will have jumped another notch as a result of the latest developments.
In a later statement, Travelport says:
"The enhancement of distribution capabilities, whether optional ancillary sales, product differentiation, providing travel agency partners with access to new services or functionality, any of these things which AA is seeking to do, can all be achieved through Travelport’s GDS."
Interestingly, if the motivation behind the current case extends to other airlines then the names in the statement above could quite easily be switched to those of other carriers and the other GDSs, such is the universal defence they now collectively have.