Half the fun of taking photos is the ability to share them with friends and family on social media. In doing so, the photographer should receive credit for the photo being posted. Giving proper credit to an artist is a nice way of saying "thank you for taking such a great photo". Professionals show respect by giving credit to those who deserve it. In this article, Grand Lens Photography explains why it is important to give proper credit to your wedding photographer.
It is a marketing tool
Photo credits are a source of new clients and sales for photographers. These artists suffer a direct economic loss when a client fails to include accreditation of the image. It can be frustrating when a client posts a photo without attaching the photographer's name. The amount of time and energy photographers put into events and photo sessions extend beyond that. Photographers select the best images from the session or event and do any necessary retouching, which may take hours to complete. Respect the photographer's work by tagging them in the caption or in a hashtag if the artist does not have an account with a specific media outlet. Let us say you stumble upon a photo that you MUST share with others, but you cannot identify the artist. With a bit of work, you can find the answer by using Google's reverse image lookup.
Possibility of a lawsuit
There is a possibility that you may be held liable for copyright infringement under 17 U.S. Code Section 501(2) of the United States copyright law. Getting permission from the owner of the photo is necessary if you do not find public domain image. Finding a photo in a public domain is not difficult, however, the subject itself may be subject to copyright (famous works of art, famous people, etc.). In this case, you must also obtain permission from the copyright owner. If you are contacted by the artist regarding improper use, manipulation, or miscredited images, remedy the situation immediately to the best of your ability. There is no side of this predicament that will ever run in favor of anyone besides the owner of the image. Only that specific individual is allowed to dictate how, when, and why their work is used.
Numerous photographers throw what the industry calls a "watermark" on an image because they do not believe the client will ever provide them appropriate photo credit or believe someone will notice the watermark and attempt to connect with the creator. Others would agree that placing a watermark onto an image ruins the quality of the image. A photographer's only purpose for a watermark is when the photo is being delivered to a client as an "unfinished proof". This is a common and somewhat necessary evil for wedding and headshot photographers. The images in this stage are absolutely not for sharing or public display.
There is no justification for not crediting the photographer who created the original work. A lack of credit does not present you as appealing and this does not make the post more engaging to the public. Not giving credit only upsets the photographer, which they then question the possibility of working with that client in the future, especially when the photographer works for exposure rather than monetary compensation. At the end of the day, all artists deserve credit for their strong work.