Getting social – modern day wedding social media etiquette
Snap, filter, caption, post.
It’s almost second nature these days, and what is it they say – if it’s not on Instagram, it didn’t happen?
When it comes to your wedding day, while the ‘unplugged’ trend of requesting guests to refrain from taking photos, is growing in popularity, there’s no doubt couples choosing to harness the power of social media, is beating strong.
Although social media might be acceptable at a wedding celebration, there is a certain etiquette that a couple and their guests can follow ensuring the entire day isn’t spent behind a screen.
For the couple, it’s key to communicate social media wishes when it comes to tech savvy guests. Happy for friends and family to photograph the ceremony? Then consider asking guests to refrain from snapping during the aisle walk so they’re not in the way of the photographer or obstructing views. If you want to be the first one to announce to the social media world you’re officially hitched, then politely ask guests not to post images until you’ve had the opportunity to do so. How do you do this? If you’ve set up a wedding website, it’s not a bad idea to detail your wishes prior to the wedding day. Alternately, your celebrant or officiant should be able to announce this to your waiting guests before the bride walks down the aisle. It saves for any awkward moments and also ensures that your ceremony doesn’t suddenly become all about housekeeping! Otherwise,enlist the help of your emcee or clever signage.
Creating a custom hashtag is fun but the last thing you need to be worrying about is posting every moment of the day. At a certain point, and we suggest prior to the ceremony, pop your phone away or hand it off to a guest. Allow them to document the day, rather than a heap of selfies that will probably never see the light of day!
As a guest, it’s easy to be caught up in the moment and want to share every magical photo moment. However, no matter your excitement levels, hold your horses on this one. If there’s a dedicated hashtag the couple are using, then by all means post away (though it’s polite to do so after the ceremony). If in doubt, always err on the side of caution and don’t post photos of the couple until it’s been ok’d by them, instead stick to posting your best selfies with other guests.
Keep a low profile. The photographer has been paid for a reason and shouldn’t be contending with you to get the best shot. Remain unobtrusive and keep the flash off.
Above all, there’s a blanket rule when it comes to social media for couples and guests alike. Be kind to each other. Try to refrain from posting less than flattering photos of people. If the shoe was on the other foot, would you want an image of yourself on social media showing off your best Jabba the Hutt impression?
At the end of the day, weddings are there to be celebrated. And if the couple so wish, then sharing the celebration can only add to the festivities. If they choose to keep things private however, respect their wishes, keep that phone tucked safely away and hit the dance floor, immediately.
Image: Ben Swinnerton