So therefore I think it discredits the entire story, despite the fact that most of it's true.
That's the point - this article is supposed to be written by a respectable journalist not 'Joe Surfer'. With this in mind it is appalingly researched. Maybe the guy who wrote it had just discovered Kelkoo and thought it was a revelation - this is only about 3 or 4 years out of date. Also the sites he lists as being quality aren't any different to most of the sites in the other 90% of the SERPs - if he'd done his research he'd realise they ALL use the same booking engines!
Also the point he makes is the opposite to reality - if the SERPs were based entirely on content, titles etc the results would be even worse - what does he expect Google to do about sorting the however many million hotel sites?