WCL: Online wedding etiquette: Airplane mode, please

If you're the bride or groom, the last thing you need is someone ruining your wedding by using Twitter or Facebook as you're walking down the aisle.

Joining WCL to discuss wedding tech etiquette is the author of the social studies column with tribune media services: Julia Allison.

1. WHAT ARE SOCIAL MEDIA RULES IN TERMS OF MAJOR LIFE EVENTS LIKE WEDDING DAYS? Realize that social media wedding etiquette is still firmly lodged in a chaotic state of nature - the rules haven't yet been codified - so expecting everyone to know "what is appropriate" is ridiculous. There IS no appropriate yet!

2. I DON'T WANT PEOPLE TO SEE PICTURES OF MY WEDDING UNTIL THE PROFESSIONAL PHOTOS COME OUT. HOW DO I ASK GUESTS AT THE WEDDING NOT TO USE SOCIAL MEDIA? Send out a polite, good-humored email to your favorite tweet-happy guests that you'd prefer they set their phones to "airplane mode" during your wedding day. Reinforcing that with a (funny) sign outside your ceremony is pushing it, but if you're dead-set on ensuring compliance, probably a necessity, as the tech-obsessed set is notorious for their ADD when it comes to anti-sharing decrees.

3. IS IT RUDE OF ME TO TALK ABOUT MY UPCOMING WEDDING ON FACEBOOK, WHEN SOME OF MY FACEBOOK FRIENDS WEREN'T INVITED TO THE WEDDING? That's a great question ... I think it's to be expected, and I think people can handle it.

4. TAKE A LOOK AT THIS CLIP. ISN'T THAT TAKING IT A LITTLE TOO FAR? HA, nah - it's their wedding, and they can do cartwheels in the middle of the ceremony if they want! This particular couple only did that to be funny, but I remember when my brother and his now wife changed their status - it was a REAL moment, with actual feelings attached to it. Facebook official is really official!

a. Remember when weddings had disposable cameras at each table? LOL, neither do I! Now you can establish a joint Flickr site so everyone can upload their candids. That way, instead of one photographer, you have 150 for the price of... well, the whole wedding.

b. Especially for destination or multi-day affairs, creating a GroupMe account - in which one text can be sent to the phone numbers of everyone in your wedding party (and they can "reply to all") - is a brilliant logistical solution.

c. Instead of banning it, embrace tweeting in an official manner. Appoint your most clever friend "Tweeter of Honor," instructing him/her to livetweet the event in humorous, witty, or sentimental 140-character bits. Create a custom hashtag, like #NatalieChrisWed2011 so all wired guests can enjoy the day's tweets. Later you can aggregate them in a feed, and print them out for posterity. Your kids will love it - or roll their eyes. Probably both.

d. Set up a social media station at the reception, complete with laptop and a big monitor scrolling through those hashtagged tweets. Inspire guests to type out answers to questions like, "What should we name our ungrateful future children?" "Any great marriage advice?" or "How soon should we start couples therapy?"

About Julia Allison

New York Magazine named her "the most famous young journalist in the city," The New York Times wrote that she is "among the best-known columnists of her generation," and Newsweek dubbed her "The Marketing Machine." Her August 2008 WIRED cover on personal branding outsold every other issue in the last decade, save three.

Julia Allison, 30, is a nationally syndicated columnist, tv personality, internet entrepreneur, public speaker, and unabashed social media junkie - even her stationery reads "@JuliaAllison." PRINT

An internationally syndicated columnist, Allison's weekly column, "Social Studies," examines the impact of technology and social media on culture. Launched in March of 2011 by Tribune Media Services, it runs in newspapers around the world.

She's also written for Newsweek, New York magazine, The Guardian UK, The Huffington Post, Cosmo, Maxim, Teen Vogue, Page Six magazine, The New York Post, Nerve.com and has covered everything from New York Fashion Week to the White House Correspondents' Dinner to the Consumer Electronics Show.

Allison got her start as a columnist at Georgetown University, writing the first ever dating column in the student newspaper from 2002-2004. She brought her popular (and sometimes controversial) column to newspaper AM New York from 2005-2007 & next in the magazine Time Out New York from 2007-2009.


An on-camera media expert, Allison has made over 1,000 appearances on every major network, including NBC, CBS, ABC, Fox, CNN, MSNBC, FoxNews, E!, VH1, and MTV. Since 2009, she's been an on-air correspondent for NBC's New York NonStop, covering designers, celebrities, and behind-the-scenes at New York Fashion Week (next season will be her NINTH!) From 2007 - 2008, Allison was Editor-at-Large for STAR magazine, hired to be the tv "face" for their brand. Along the way, Allison has provided commentary for dozens of shows, including The Today Show, CBS' Early Show, Chelsea Lately, CNN's Reliable Sources, Access Hollywood, Showbiz Tonight, Fox&Friends, Glenn Beck, The Big Idea with Donny Deutsch, Hannity & Colmes, G4's Attack of the Show, MTV's It's On with Alexa Chung and the weekly Relationship 101 segment on Fox's Morning Show with Mike & Juliet.

Allison conceptualized, executive produced and co-hosted over 100 episodes of the short-form chat show, TMI Weekly, dubbed "The View of the Facebook generation," from Next New Networks 2008-2009. The show aired daily on NBC's NY NonStop cable channel as well as iTunes & Hulu - making over a quarter million dollars in ad revenue, setting records for web video at the time.


A leading force in new media & web 2.0, Allison is the co-founder of NonSociety.com, a lifecasting platform that was selected as a 2009 Official Webby Honoree. She's been hired by companies like Unilever, Microsoft, A&E and The Learning Annex and universities including MIT's Sloan School of Business, University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School of Business and Harvard Business School to speak on new media, personal branding, marketing & entrepreneurship. A regular panelist at tech & media conferences around the world, she relishes the copious use of nametags. Brands have hired Allison as a celebrity spokesperson, talent endorser and expert for a variety of campaigns. In 2010, she starred in the Microsoft BING ad series highlighting well-known New York personalities like Andre Leon Talley, Zach Posen, Kelly Cutrone, and Sherri Shepard. In 2009, SONY hired her as a spokesperson alongside Peyton Manning & Justin Timberlake, starring in a national tv, print, radio & digital campaign or its Vaio laptop (Sony.com/Experts). Most recently, she has partnered with brands like Kodak, Cisco, Armani Exchange, Axe, Caress, Degree, Seaworld, T-Mobile, Volvo and Pepsi's Propel.

Allison's passion is mentoring aspiring female journalists & entrepreneurs with unconventional career advice. She has mentored over fifty young women one-on-one. She has also worked with the organizations Oxfam, Women for Women International, Susan G. Komen and Charity: Water.

A social media addict, she has two laptops, a desktop, an iPad & an iPhone along with two Facebook profiles, four Twitter handles, a Myspace page, a LinkedIn account, a Flickr feed, four Tumblrs, three Movable Type blogs, one Wordpress, two Vimeos, one Quora account, two YouTube channels and a photogenic white shih-tzu named Lilly who - yep - tweets (@Lillydog). Combined, her accounts number over 150,000 fans, followers or subscribers. EARLY YEARS

Raised on the mean suburban streets of Chicago's North Shore, Allison attended New Trier High School, where she honed her "power dork" skills on the debate team, school newspaper and yes, even the Latin club.

In the midst of college, Allison worked on a high profile congressional campaign, later becoming the youngest legislative correspondent on Capitol Hill during the 107th Congress. After graduating Georgetown with a degree in political science in 2004, she provided occasional on-air election commentary during the 2004 race and was simultaneously rejected for a job at Bath & Body Works. In the five years since, her proudest moment was Oscar-winner Diablo Cody twittering that she admired Allison's "balls."

Her father is still waiting for her to get a "real job with health insurance." Additional sites: juliaallison.com