Social Media Really Bytes

*snare drum*

Anyway. You know how I’m an old person? Because when BM B—a young whippersnapper who is hip and with it—told me that I should get an app or use a special hashtag for the wedding, my eyes rolled so hard they were practically stuck in the back of my head. I mean, what’s the point, right?

(Me, via Funny or Die)

Social media is constantly evolving. I’m no troglodyte; I have more than enough of an Internet presence between Facebook, Twitter, and blogging here on the ”˜bee. But I definitely feel like things are changing faster than I can keep up.

Mrs. Mink, Mrs. Otter, and Mrs. Lemur all discussed the pros and cons of having an unplugged wedding, and I don’t think I can say it any better than they can. But I came to the same conclusion as Mrs. Lemur—an unplugged wedding isn’t for us. Why?

At the end of the day, I’m really uncomfortable with the idea of telling our guests what to do. Our guests are giving up their weekend, traveling a long way, spending money on hotel rooms—who am I to tell them to put their cell phones and cameras away? If they want to take pictures, who am I to tell them no? And sure, we could ask people not to take pictures, but what do we do when someone does it anyway? Stop the ceremony, take their phone away, and kick them out? Yeah, right—and then I’ll tell them to pick up their phone at the end of the day in the principal’s office, because I morphed into one of my high school teachers.

Besides, we do want our guests to take pictures. We’re going to have to wait a good long while for our professional photos, and in the meantime, it would be nice to have photos from our family and friends to tide us over. Not to mention that I can’t be everywhere at once, and it would be awesome to see the wedding from other people’s perspectives.

As far as the concern about guests getting in our photographer’s way, I’m not worried. Aleks is a pro; our wedding isn’t his first rodeo, and I’m sure he’ll be able to get where he needs to be to capture the photos he wants to take. Likewise, I’m reasonably confident that our guests aren’t going to start throwing ”˜bows and jumping in each other’s way at the sight of a poofy white dress.

And our ceremony is going to be short and sweet. I’m not going to quibble with everyone over what’s ultimately fifteen minutes of our lives, you know? Granted, it’s a really important and exciting and wonderful fifteen minutes—but that’s why people might want to take pictures of it! Which brings me back to my first point; if people want to take pictures or videos and share them on Facebook and Twitter and Instagram and whatever else is out there, who am I to say no?

So that said, Stallion and I are actually encouraging our guests to take plenty of photos both at the ceremony and reception. We—or, really B, because this was all her idea—set up an account on Wedding Party so that at the wedding or any pre-wedding parties (well, maybe not the bachelorette), guests can download the app, find our wedding, and upload their photos. Plus, I can upload information to share with everyone such as event dates, times, and locations so guests know where they need to be and when. B was at a wedding last year where the bride and groom used this app, and she swears it went over really well. I like the clean, simple interface and how the photos are displayed chronologically, so it literally recaps the night for you. Convenient, right? Instead of recapping our wedding for you all, I’ll just link you to the Wedding Party photo stream and call it a day. Just kidding.

 

(Screencap of the Wedding Party interface, via Huffington Post)

All that said, it’s easy to go to the other extreme; I’m not going to insist that NOBODY take ANY pictures at all, but I don’t want to look like I’m demanding that EVERYBODY BETTER USE MY APP OR ELSE!!!!! So all we’re doing is putting a blurb on the wedding website (dead simple since Wedding Party partners with My Wedding, where we’re hosting the site) and making a little sign to put next to the program basket at the ceremony. No one has to use it, but it’s available for anyone who wants to. I figure if people are going to be taking pictures and sharing them online anyway, I can at least ask them to do me a solid and upload them to Wedding Party so we/anyone else who wants to can see everything in one place.

If people use the app, that’s great, and if not, that’s fine too—it’s not like setting it up cost me any time, money, or dignity. I’m genuinely curious to see how it works out, since I’ve never seen it in action before.

What’s your stance on social media at weddings? Did you take any measures to encourage/discourage guests taking and sharing photos?

BLOGGER

Mrs. Filly

Location:
Boston, MA
Wedding Date:
April 2014
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  1. Member
    bighornsheep 115 posts, Blushing bee @ 5:53 am

    As a forewarning, this may not make sense, since I’m really tired and trying to do a million things at once, LOL!

    As for social media, Mr Big and I were of two minds. Originally, we thought it’d be funny to have the whole, “You may now change your status on Facebook” in the ceremony (don’t worry – we’re not doing it anymore). But after some thought, Mr Big ultimately came to the conclusion that he wanted to have an unplugged ceremony.

    We’re totally fine with cell phones and cameras during the rest of the day, but during the ceremony (which will be about half an hour), he wanted everyone to be present. That, and our photographers also requested we keep it relatively unplugged (they’ve had problems with Ipads getting in the way of candids).

    So all-in-all, we’ll be having an unplugged ceremony. We’ve even got a sign for it! :) For the rest of the day, everyone can go Facebook/Instagram/Twitter/social media-crazy!

  2. Member
    ellemm005 172 posts, Blushing bee @ 6:14 am

    We’ve talked about an unplugged wedding and haven’t come to a decision yet. I want to see guest photos, but I also want my friends and family to be in the moment with us. My biggest concern/fear is of someone using a flash and ruining my pro pics, so we’re considering asking everyone to turn their flash off for the ceremony and big reception moments – I think I read too many horror stories online!

  3. Member
    MrsMermaid 159 posts, Blushing bee @ 8:15 am

    Personally, I didn’t care about having an unplugged wedding. I had so many other things to worry about… I didn’t want to add the stress asking people to not use their phones.

    I am so glad I did, because there were some of the most special things that came out of people using their phones/cameras:
    1) During our wedding ceremony, my aunt was taking pictures with her camera, and when we opened our gifts the next day, my aunt had managed to print a couple of copies of a gorgeous picture from the middle of our ceremony. It was so thoughtful, I started crying
    2) Our last dance was done around 1:00am (well after our photographers and videographers left). In the middle of the dance, all of our close friends created a circle around us and started singing along. It was so awesome, and totally unplanned. I am so lucky a couple of the guys had their phones, and recorded video of this.

    At the end of the day, the decision to go unplugged is up to the bride and grrom; but after going through the entire wedding day, I know that having cameras and phones made my day better.

  4. Member
    OKJC 98 posts, Worker bee @ 9:13 am

    I’m not crazy about the thought of people using their smart phones throughout the ceremony, but we’re thinking of using capsule and promoting that people upload pictures, especially from the reception!

  5. Member
    mswallaby 2066 posts, Buzzing bee @ 9:20 am

    I love the idea of an unplugged wedding – photos and social media really aren’t very important to me. We talked about it briefly and were going to ask our pastor to mention it before the ceremony began. But I think in the end we forgot haha. And it all worked out – I don’t remember any crazy uncle hogging the aisle snapping photos on his iPad, or any shenanigans like that. Most people won’t think to share their photos with you, though, so if you want to get their photos back make sure you be pretty specific about it! Maybe in addition to having a sign on the table with the programs, put a small sign or flyer on each reception table with the URL/app info?

  6. Member
    missgoldfish 454 posts, Helper bee @ 10:55 am

    We’re using the Wedding Party app and hosted our website on mywedding.com too! I also love the easy interface and hope that guests will utilize our app to upload the pictures they took during the events leading up to our wedding.

  7. Member
    Mrs. Clover 123 posts, Blushing bee @ 3:31 pm

    I would totally turn teacher in the middle of the ceremony and be like, “Give me that. NOW. We asked you once and I am not asking you again. You may have it back at the reception.” I may or may not ask for a parent :)

  8. Member
    msfilly 827 posts, Busy bee @ 1:54 am

    @Miss Bighorn Sheep: Oh wow, if my photographer had specifically requested we go down the unplugged route, I’d probably be singing a different tune. But I’m a pansy so I just take the path of least resistance, lol.

    @EllEmm005: Turning the flash off is a great compromise. Maybe I’ll have our officiant make a quick announcement before things get underway.

    @MrsMermaid: That’s another great point – even the best photographers can’t be everywhere and capture everything. So really, by taking lots of pictures, everyone is doing me a favor :)

    @OKJC: That’s basically what we’re doing, too! I’m hoping people do use the app, but if not, I’ll just creep on myself on Facebook, lol.

    @Mrs. Wallaby: Putting something on each table is a good idea! Wedding Party actually generates signs in a couple different sizes that you can use, so it’ll be easy to put a little something on each table.

    @MissGoldFish: Great minds think alike! Hope it works out for you!

    @Miss Clover: HAHAHA and that is why I’m not a teacher! I’m a huge pansy. I take the path of least resistance, lol.

  9. Member
    futuremrsdino 73 posts, Worker bee @ 6:25 am

    I thought about going unplugged but I know that a lot of my friends love taking pictures so we didn’t bother.

    I was so glad I made that choice.

    It took AGES to get our official pics, so seeing that people enjoyed our day so much to put their pictures onto Facebook was just amazing! Being able to see it back through their eyes was the best feeling! Pictures of moments that you wouldn’t see otherwise, and yes, while some of the pics weren’t the most flattering, I didn’t care! You’ll want to see pictures as soon as possible, if you’re anything like me!

    Our photographer took a candid iphone pic on the day and put it online when she got home. We didn’t see it until we got back to our hotel in the early hours and I bawled like a baby!

  10. Member
    Blueskiesinjune 11 posts, Newbee @ 8:23 pm

    My husband and I got married last June and we used My Wedding for our website and Wedding Party for our guests’ photos…they were both excellent. We (well, he – I gave him the project and he got really into it) researched a bunch of options, including Instagram, and in the end the seamless integration of My Wedding and Wedding Party won us over. We loved seeing the photos our guests took of us and each other. It was really fun to take a look and see how much fun everyone had!

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