Unplugged Ceremonies

With technology a part of so much of our lives today, many couples are opting for a tech-free wedding day.

We live in an era full of technology, where we no longer enjoy the moment, but instead have begun to document the moment. We view our lives through a small screen, and it seems like the only memories we have are accessed through our social media pages.

Photographers, Wedding Planners, Officiants and the wedding couples themselves have all become annoyed with phone-obsessed, photo-hungry, snap-happy guests who won’t stay seated or remain still during the wedding ceremony. Guests are ruining the wedding photos by blocking the professional photographer or distracting the couple. It’s problem that needs to stop!

Here’s the issue: couples pay a substantial amount to have a professional photograph their big day. Photographers cannot do their best work when guests are in the way. Officiants stumble through their vows when they are distracted by guests moving around or flashing their cameras like paparazzi. Or, when the couple turns to see the expressions on their guests’ faces, they are blocked by screens staring back at them.

It’s extremely intrusive when the officiant wants to begin a heartfelt speech, or the couple are sharing their vows, to have guests reaching over their heads or standing up and moving around in front of the photographer, all to get that perfect shot from their cell phone. The first look, the walk down the aisle, the kiss… those are special, hopefully once-in-a-lifetime moments, and there are no do-overs. The bride doesn’t want to see all of these devices snapping and flashing at her as she walks down the aisle; she wants to see her groom waiting at the altar. She wants to see the look on his face as he sees her for the first time in her wedding dress. She wants to embrace that moment without interference, and so does he.

When guests are constantly in motion to get a picture, blocking the photographer and distracting the officiant, it really affects the experience and the end result for the couple. When there are cameras out or phones in hands, guests aren’t actually present, and no matter what angle the photographer tries to get, someone will be in the way, photo bombing each shot.

The solution? An unplugged ceremony. Couples are beginning to make custom signs expressing their wishes and asking the officiant to explain their request that all cell phones, devices, and cameras be put away so the professionals can do their jobs without interruption. We couldn’t agree more.

The guests most likely won’t be happy about it and may even be resistant, but the ceremony is not about them and they will get over it. Guests are privileged to be there. It’s about the bride and groom. It’s about the couple inviting their guests to share in a very intimate and special time in their lives, to embrace it and hear the words that are expressed to one another during their wedding ceremony.

When you accept an invitation to someone’s wedding, don’t be a distraction. You are a guest. Be grateful to be there. Please sit down, unplug, be present, and enjoy the wedding!