Your guests are like your personal paparazzi on your wedding day, but guests with phones tend to be oblivious to how intrusive they are being during your entrance, ceremony, and portrait sessions.
What should you do if you don’t want your special and intimate moments to find their way onto social media? Unfortunately, you can’t fully control the situation but there are steps you can take to make your wishes known and limit social media uploads.
Mention It on Your Invitation
If you will be creating a wedding website, mention your wishes there. Get specific though. Are you fine with guests snapping photos at the reception but not the ceremony?
Would you prefer guests to wait until you and your partner have posted photos before they do? Tell them exactly what you do and don’t want – it is your day after all.
Keep in mind that if you’re going to use a wedding hashtag, it might be confusing to also ask guests not to post photos.
Include a Note on the Program
If you’re sending out printed invitations, you may have to mention your no-photo rule on your programs. You could even include a small printed note with your invites, simply print your request on matching paper and slide it in with the rest of the items in the envelopes. Here is a great example of the wording:
‘We’ve taken special care to hire a professional photographer so that our family and guests may enjoy the ceremony.’
You can also let your guests know they will get the chance for photos after the ceremony, once your professional photographer is satisfied with the shots they get.
Since your Officiant will have everyone’s attention at the start of the ceremony, ask them to announce your requests about photos and social media. This will also ensure much better photos of your guests as well as your photographer will likely only take photos of guests who are present and in the moment, feeling the emotion of your ceremony.
Make sure you allow for time for this – if your Officiant gets to the front and the processional begins immediately, you will have lost your moment to remind your guests. If you have loud music blaring, they won’t be heard over it!
Create a Sign
Another option is to create a sign that you can place at the entrance of your ceremony. This ensures that all guests see it, but assume most won’t read it. We all go through life ignoring important details that are right in front of us, so it’s important to share your requests in multiple locations, in multiple ways. You might also want a sign sitting at your ceremony site, centre stage, so everyone who comes in will see it and be more likely to read it. When your ceremony is about to begin it can be removed and placed at the bar or charcuterie station.
Don’t know what to put on the sign? Use this example!
‘Live in the moment, don’t worry about capturing the details. Someone is here to do that for you.’
Alter Your Privacy Settings
If you don’t want to take any chances, you can always change your social media privacy settings. This way, you can’t be tagged in any photos you haven’t approved.
Don’t feel guilty for asking your guests not to post your wedding photos on social media. By approaching it in a fair and even humorous way, it doesn’t have to be a big deal.
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