Brides are now able to invite anyone and everyone to their weddings without having to worry about the cost. All they have to do is incorporate new tools and social media.
When Annick and Peter found out Annick's grandmother had been hurt, and wasn't going to be able to make it to their upcoming wedding, they decided to bring their wedding to her through a live webcast.
"She actually had her friends over, got dressed in her dress that she was going to wear to the wedding," said Annick.
Emerging technology and social media is changing the face of modern weddings. The Knot found 45 percent of brides incorporated social media into their big day.
"Technology just makes it easier in a lot of cases for a bride," said Anja Winikka, site director for TheKnot.com.
More and more guests are being asked to "sign in" without pen and paper. Instead, they leave video comments in a guest book produced with an iPad app. Friends and family are also requested to tag pictures to specially created albums on Facebook or Pintrest. And, cutting the invitation list in half is easier than ever with a wedding webcast.
"Some couples are frankly obsessed with reality TV and they're into the wedding shows and this is their chance to broadcast their wedding," said Philip Lee, owner and founder of IdoStream.com.
Lee warns of course that live streaming is not without potential pitfalls and adds nothing is edited out.
"I've had grooms who have been mic'ed up and didn't realize they were mic'ed up. They kept chatting and people online could hear everything they said," explained Lee.
In fact, Winikka says new technology brings all sorts of new rules of etiquette to the party. For example, should guests post Facebook photos the day of the event?
"She may not want that to happen," said Winikka.
the same goes for live Tweeting at the event. The bride may encourage it or consider it disrespectful. Winikka suggest brides make a social media policy and be clear about it.
"Spread the news through family and friends, bridal party, letting people know. And if she really wants people to follow the rule, I would say even leave like a little note at the bottom of the program," she said.
And lastly, if you're invited to a wedding webcast, are you still expected to send a gift?
"Even though you're not there in person, you have been invited. So I think it is appropriate for you to send a wedding gift," said Lee.
As for Annick and Peter, they're glad they were able to use technology to let grandma share in their special day.
"She was able to enjoy the wedding as well. That meant very much to all of us," said Annick.
While wedding webcasts can be done by professionals, you can also do them yourself on the cheap. All you need is a camera, laptop, some software and an Internet connection.
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