Affiliate Programs NewsOver the past few months, there’s been a lot going on in the affiliate marketing world. And as we approach the holiday season, that doesn’t appear to be changing. Here’s a quick summary of some recent top stories.

National Sales Tax to Solve Nexus Tax Challenge?

The San Jose Business Journal reports that Tennessee’s Sen. Lamar Alexander is working to reform online sales tax collections nationwide.

The Tennessee Republican told the Nashville Business Journal that he backs enabling states to make online retailers collect sales taxes that consumers are supposed to be paying by law.

Alexander said the legislation he’s developing would offer states an option of either joining the national streamline sales tax system or meeting minimal requirements, with the goal of creating consistent collection requirements for nationally operating online retailers.

“I hope that we can introduce legislation quickly, and that it will be bipartisan,” Alexander said.

This is a kind of follow-up to the issues Amazon faced earlier this year, when California   state legislators passed a bill signed by Gov. Jerry Brown to force Amazon  and other online retailers to collect sales taxes on goods they sell online.

As you’ve heard, that bill prompted Amazon to terminate the affiliate agreements with its associates in the state. However, a recent compromise has given affiliates and Amazon a one-year reprieve to work through this issue.

While many in the industry are hoping that something will be passed in Washington, the reality of such legislation making it through gridlock is unlikely.

Google Removes Advanced Search + Operator, or Does It?

Search Engine Watch reports that Google has made a significant change to the way advanced searches are done, removing the use of a plus sign to to indicate mandated inclusion in the search result offerings.

However, it’s not time to fret. Clever affiliates like you will be able to work around this issue by using the “advanced search” link at the bottom of Google’s search engine results pages.

Affiliate Summit West 2012

Affiliate Summit West runs from January 7-10 in Las Vegas. Some of the highlights include sessions around content monetization and publishing, getting more revenue from your existing traffic, email and list building, and defining your social media strategy.

Carolyn Kmet, Director of Affiliate Marketing for Groupon, appears on a session called “Effectively Monetizing Traffic with Daily Deals,” which will offer an advertiser’s view on how affiliates can earn more by understanding the stats and tracking surrounding daily deals sites, which have exploded over the past year.

What do you think about these updates? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!