Is it just me or are people completely dependent and addicted to their phones? (I am not innocent by any means) Everywhere I turn, peoples faces are in their phones or ipads. While online interaction and engagement may be skyrocketing, face to face encounters are surely on the decline, especially when you are sitting with someone and not talking to them directly but doing whatever it is people do constantly on their devices.
Now, I obviously love my phone, need my phone, and feel lost without it (My phone literally went down for 45 minutes today and I messaged my husband through Facebook freaking out and convinced I wouldn’t know how to communicate with people and that I would miss important texts/call- which I obviously didn’t because I’m just not that big of a deal.) So when it comes to your wedding, you might have mixed feelings about social media and personal devices. You want everyone to remember the moments, take pictures and share their excitement for your big day. But you might not want a million phones looking at you and taking away from photographers magic, or yours. So what do you do?
Well, first you should make it very clear on whether you want to permit cell phones, ipads or other devices at your wedding altogether. So many couples these days are declaring a black out wedding. No social media, no pictures (beside the professional they paid for) but rather having their guests live in the moment and be present.
If you do decide that you want people to use their phones, there are a few ways you can control their activity when it comes to your big day. First, you can suggest a hashtag to use. Tips for the perfect hashtag- keep it short and simple. A super long hashtag will eat up to many characters for people and they won’t use it. Often your last names (or portions if your last names are super long) will work. Or your first names. Or nicknames or something else completely different or funny or creative. Make sure you start using the hashtag when you announce your engagement (ideally on social media) and all your wedding related posts so people start to see it and get familiar with it. Also, add a sign at your wedding ceremony and reception that states for people to use the hashtag you have decided to use. This way people won’t forget.
Secondly, in your program, or as an announcement, inform the guests that the photographer has full range and they will ask people to put their phones or cameras down, or away for a shot they need. You paid (good money) for a professional and it’s important that their shots- say of your first kiss- isn’t blocked by 40 stretched out arms with phones in hand.
Now you won’t be able to play social media police, so you have to be willing to accept that people won’t follow the rules you have set out.
I hope this helps you in the decision to have or not have personal devices and social media at your wedding. Thinking about announcing your engagement on social media? Check out this post I wrote a while back about how to get creative with it.
Need help with your wedding? Let’s chat about how I can help.