Judging other people’s experiences – take the poll!

For anyone who has not seen today’s XKCD comic, take a look below:

photo experiences

This exact concept has crossed my mind when planning mine and Nick’s wedding – do we ask people to use a hashtag for instagram? Do we get a photobooth? Or eliminate both to encourage people to really “experience” the ceremony and reception?

My current thoughts lean towards saying yes to the hashtag but no to the photobooth (see my reason in a previous post discussing what I did and didn’t like from a recent wedding):

“I’m going to go out on a limb here and have a surprising (even to me) observation – I was actually happy that there WASN’T a photo booth! Normally I am all about the photo booth, as I even mentioned above how I hate when all the little chitlins hog it. But what I noticed from this wedding not having one was that, since there was nothing to distract people, everyone was actually on the dance floor. I really felt like the reception was more cohesive without adding in the extra layer of something to do.”

On the flipside, I do like the hashtag for a couple of reasons.

1 – Unless you take away people’s phones, you won’t stop them from taking pictures (and if you DO take away their phones, or “unplug” your wedding, I think everyone would just be pissed).

2 – I want to see all my guests’ pictures in one cohesive collection. I’m not worried about unflattering pictures of myself being posted, there are plenty of those out on my Facebook already that I posted myself.

3 – I know the photographer will be focused on the happy couple and the bridal party, so I don’t want to miss all the pictures of my guests having fun too! I’m a sucker for a great candid shot and I’m sure the guests will provide a bunch.

At this point all of these thoughts could change a hundred times before the wedding, but for now I think it makes sense. Tell me what you think!

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9 thoughts on “Judging other people’s experiences – take the poll!

  1. We are asking out guests to ‘unplug’ from the ceremony only. It is something I have noticed at 5 weddings I have been to recently, that during the ceremony EVERYONE had their phones or cameras out. Later, hardly anyone I spoke to could remember much from the ceremony as they had been to focused on taking the perfect picture. Since the Smithster and I have decided that for us personally, the ceremony is super important (public declaration of out promise etc) it is a huge thing for people to be present and aware.

    I was originally toying with the idea of having a hash-tag, but the instagram ‘thing’ still hasn’t really hit NZ as much as other countries. Probably only 2 or 3 of my friends use it.

    Kids was a point we butted heads over (he wanted them, i most definitely don’t) but we have compromised and let our guests know (politely of course) that only mini guests over 5 will be invited.

    It is really interesting what you do pick up from other peoples weddings once you are planning your own – I might write my own post on stuff I have noticed (will link you as the ‘inspired by’)

    • I love that you’ve discussed all the things we have. Yeah we had to have the talk about inviting kids, and it really came down to the guest limit for the venue and realizing we wouldn’t be able to invite a lot of people if we included kids.
      And yeah if only 2-3 of your friends have Instagram (and I’m sure none of the older guests have it!), there’s probably no point it trying to make that happen lol. All of our friends and cousins are on it, and they take a lot of pictures so I can’t wait to see their collection!
      Oooo! If you’re writing an “inspired by” piece I totally can’t wait to read it! I’d love to see a bunch of planning thoughts you’re having all laid out with reasons behind them. I look forward to it =)

  2. I like the idea of suggesting an unplugged ceremony, because I feel like I would be pissed if I looked out during the ceremony and saw phones/iPads/cameras instead of faces. However, I’m not a big dancer, and if there’s nothing to do but dance at a reception, odds are, I will leave the table to go to the bar, and then go back to the table. I rarely dance, so for me, a photo booth (or anything else for that matter), doesn’t deter people from dancing; rather, it gives non-dancers a little something to do. Even my boring non-dancing fuddy-duddy of a fiance looooooooves photo booths, which was a shocker to me, because I’m indifferent. But it changed my perspective and I realized that a lot of people find it really fun and it doesn’t take long, so they can run in, take a photo, and go back to dancing. I don’t think it takes away from anything else going on, but adds to it!

  3. We did just the hashtag and I was VERY glad we did!! The next day, my husband and I were sitting in the airport waiting for our honeymoon flight and we were able to look at all the pictures guests took — it was SO fun to already re-live that day and to see the event through the eyes of our guests. Everyone saw different things and guests captured a lot of little moments that our photographers didn’t. Plus, people are gonna take pictures anyways — might as well be able to see them! 🙂

    We didn’t do the photobooth mostly because it was a needless (and expensive) purchase and I was thankful we didn’t go with it. I agree it is kind of distracting and keeps guests from fully participating in the reception!

    Good luck with all your planning! 🙂

  4. Oooh! Another thing I wanted to say — with the photobooth you’re going to see a lot of the same pictures (guests dressed up in goofy costumes and making silly faces) but with the hashtag you’ll see a variety of genuine moments from your day!

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