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Digital Black Friday: When Every Site Becomes a Flash Deal Site

screen shot 2011 11 25 at 6 39 40 am 600x400 Digital Black Friday: When Every Site Becomes a Flash Deal Site

Black Friday always blows up on Twitter. But some shoppers are using Twitter to find out about real time deals. “This is the first ‘Twitter holiday,’” pronounced Hayes Davis, Founder and CEO of Appotize, after Thanksgiving 2009 in a New York Post story about virtual sales. “This is the time where people are going to leverage this tool and the real-time nature of it.” Retailers are taking the concept of “real time” seriously. One trend among vendors is offering deals “for a limited time”–in some cases, as little as an hour–to get shoppers to jump at the offers.

The trend is distinct from Cyber Monday, during which retailers offer sales online. But increasingly the holiday traditions are mixing. Walmart’s online sale is going on now. Heading to Cambridge this month? Log on at 11:28 a.m. to get a discount at the Charles Hotel (password: CYBER11). And so on. Trolling Twitter on the first day of the Christmas season may not sound like as much fun as marshmallow hot chocolate and the Apple store, but it beats standing in line at Best Buy at midnight and there is no risk of being pepper-sprayed.

Follow Adrianne Jeffries on Twitter or via RSS. ajeffries@observer.com