"...There's also a belief in the 2/40 rule. It's the idea that 2% of travelers produce 40% of a company's profit.
So in the past, when you were rewarded based on miles, a lot of people in December would take long flights (usually to Asia) without even visiting where the plane went in order to maintain their status. And they might do 2 or 3 mileage runs in a week just to maintain status! That era is now over.
The other facet of the new Delta changes go back to the profitability index again. If you have a Delta American Express card, your rewards will now be magnified. That's because it's mostly business people who work for large companies that have Delta AMEX cards. So they're trying to tie-in closer with high profit business customers. ..."
I always wondered how bored one would have to be in their life to sit cooped up on an airplane for 2 -3 days zig-zagging across the globe just in order to keep one's "status".