Affiliate marketing currently lacks industry standards for training and certification. There are some training courses and seminars that result in certifications; however, the acceptance of such certifications is mostly due to the reputation of the individual or company issuing the certification. Affiliate marketing is not commonly taught in universities, and only a few college instructors work with Internet marketers to introduce the subject to students majoring in marketing.[41]
I can think back to my real estate brokerage businesses. I never thought about it in this context, but it was all digital, even infrastructure. I never thought of it as a digital commerce company, but it set the stage for me to move into that, which, of course, I did in 2006. When you think about what I was doing at that time and then you look at what came after, like Zillow, that is a digital commerce platform.
In February 2000, Amazon announced that it had been granted a patent[18] on components of an affiliate program. The patent application was submitted in June 1997, which predates most affiliate programs, but not PC Flowers & Gifts.com (October 1994), AutoWeb.com (October 1995), Kbkids.com/BrainPlay.com (January 1996), EPage (April 1996), and several others.[13] 
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