How to Handle Loved Ones Breaking Social Media Etiquette

Find out how to navigate a sticky situation with a guest who breaks etiquette online.

When it comes to a wedding, some online faux pas by a relative or friend may cause more trouble in the grand scheme of things. Find out how to avoid these issues.

Photo: Lin & Jirsa Photography

Unconditional love is a wonderful, important thing – though our family and friends can embarrass us, we love them and support them beyond little mistakes, as they do for us. When it comes to a wedding, however, some online faux pas by a relative or friend may cause more trouble in the grand scheme of things.

To help you navigate this tricky situation, we’ve listed three common breaks in social media etiquette and how to effectively cope when those close to you break these codes. 

Offense: They post your save-the-date card, wedding invitation, or other personal details online.
How to Handle: This is typically a good-intentioned gesture to express their excitement for you and your beloved, but problems can arise when dates and venues are shared online with individuals who are not invited. If this occurs, the best thing to do is nip it in the bud right away by contacting this person and politely asking them to take it down. Unfortunately, there aren’t many preemptive precautions you can take to avoid this particular slipup – all you can do is pass a “please don’t post pictures of this” message along by word-of-mouth.

Offense: They use online messaging to RSVP to your nuptials.
How to Handle: Some friends and family may believe that is a far quicker way to let you know that they can attend your big day, but this can put you in a difficult situation if you don’t have all of the physical RSVPs in one place. In this case, reply to their online note with a message along the lines of: “Thank you so much, Aunt Nancy! We’re excited you’ll be able to make it. We look forward to receiving your RSVP card in the mail with your number of guests and food choice very soon!” Hopefully, this will be enough of a gentle nudge.

Offense: They share pictures from your big day before you’d like them to.
How to Handle: Whether it’s an overzealous bridesmaid Instagramming a picture of you getting zipped into your gown or an amateur photographer cousin that shares a snapshot of your first married kiss on Facebook – too-early social media posts have become somewhat of a modern wedding epidemic. Once the post is out there, it isn’t effective to take it down, but you can practice a few tricks before your ceremony to lessen these posts. Ask your ladies in advance and explain your reasoning behind requesting that any pictures taken while getting ready be posted after the ceremony – you don’t want anyone, especially your future spouse, seeing your ensemble before your “first look” or the service. You can also request an unplugged wedding ceremony to limit the amount of posting your guests do while you exchange vows. 

For more tips on wedding etiquette, check out our expert advice.