More couples now live-streaming weddings

SEATTLE -- More people are turning to the Internet - instead of an invite - when it comes to sharing their walk down the aisle.

The website Mashable reports a 250 percent increase in couples live streaming their weddings via Ustream, a popular online video-streaming service.

From May 2012 to May 2013, the website saw nearly 20,000 people tie the knot in front of a virtual audience, compared to just 7,800 the previous year.

"I've been (online) for so long and thought it just made sense," said Chris Pirillo, an Issaquah-based Internet entrepreneur and entertainer who live-streamed his 2012 nuptials. "Not all of our family could make it, with my family in Iowa, her family in Texas, and really all around the world."

Pirillo, who met his wife Diana through his YouTube channel - which now attracts some 300,000 subscribers - said sharing their wedding with family and friends online just made sense.

"Every day we record our lives - from me gardening and vacuuming and doing the dishes - we record it all," Diana said. "(The live-stream wedding) definitely brought family closer together. It's fun that they can watch us in their homes."

Part of the increase in weddings with a social media or streaming element may have to do with more people willing to share a special moment with a wider social network, said Monica Guzman, a Seattle-based tech columnist.

"What it says about our world is the boundaries of being physically co-present with people are gone," Guzman said. "Now we have connections with people who not necessarily with us, didn't make the guest list of weddings, but we're happy to include them in the ways that we can."

Guzman also live-streamed her 2010 summer wedding so relatives in Mexico could take part. She and her husband invited guests to use a special hashtag to share photos and memories on social networks.

After the ceremony, the couple also took a moment to update their Facebook statuses to read "married," while their wedding cake-topper was - what else? - two iPhones.

Guzman cautioned, however, that not all couples are embracing the trend.

"I think you need to be very careful how much you're on your phone at somebody's wedding," she said. "Unless it's something you think the couple's really comfortable with, it can also be good to pay attention and be in the moment."

The Pirillos, meantime, continue to share everything from the mundane to life's other moments on their Youtube channel - even the most personal things.

"I think we're definitely planning on having a baby," Diana said.

"Not online!" Chris retorted, laughing. "The whole planning and the whole coming out that's probably not going to happen"