In the era of Instagram, we're all budding photographers, excited to capture the next meal, outing, or big event. Throw a wedding into the mix, and you've got 100 of your closest friends — and their smartphones — to help document the day. But for some of us, having a social media-driven wedding isn't such a no-brainer.
Consider this your guide to which social-media route you should take for your celebration.
#GettingMarried all over the 'nets
If you're a Facebook, Twitter or Instagram fiend, your wedding is a chance to take up as much bandwidth as you want. Many couples create hashtags for their wedding, so they can do easy searches on social media sites for any photos uploaded. Hashtags can be your two names à la #KimAndKanye or a more clever name combination like Kimye.
And of course there's also an app for all of this. Your guests can download Wedding Party or Appy Couple on their smartphones, and use it to keep track of your wedding details, plus upload any pics they take at the bash. To make sure your guests are onboard, send an email before the wedding weekend asking guests to download it (and, if you're feeling it, this is the time to alert them about your hashtag).
For those brides-to-be who take their social very seriously (and happen to have an extra $3,000 handy!), W hotels in New York have a social media wedding concierge you can hire to coordinate all postings. The concierge will start documenting your wedding as early (read: planning moments!) as you want. They create your website, and put together a Pinterest board for your honeymoon, too. Around your wedding weekend, the concierge will coordinate all your guests' social media activity, and, of course, live tweet your wedding.
Let's make this a selfie-free affair
Maybe you're a luddite, picture-shy or just want to leave the photographs to the professionals. Some couples go this route because they want their event to be an intimate affair, and don't want to broadcast to those not invited that, well, they weren't invited. If this sounds like you, your best bet might be an all out ban on smartphones at your wedding. So, when you're at the altar, you won't look out at a crowd of phones pointed at you, capturing every moment. You'll have damage control over unflattering or embarrassing photos.
Keep in mind: This route might annoy guests — we are, after all, a generation that sleeps with our smartphones, wake up with our smartphones, and fall asleep reading our smartphones.
But if you word your request correctly (explain that you want to keep it private), your guests will likely follow suit. Ultimately everyone gets that this is your and your fiancé's big day. If need be, appoint a friend to be the anti-social media concierge, who quietly reminds guests to ditch the phone and hit the dance floor.
The Goldilocks approach
For the rest of us — who might have a love-hate relationship with social media or just don't feel like meddling with friends and their phones — your best bet might be a simple note on the program asking for no pictures during the ceremony. And, beyond that, it's up to you whether your log on to check out their pics.