Smiles banned from NJ driver's license photos

September 21, 2012 6:42:27 PM PDT
The DMV is rarely a happy place. But in New Jersey, officials are taking it to a whole new level by telling people not to smile on their driver's license picture.

It turns out a huge smile can throw off the Department of Motor Vehicle's new facial recognition software. New Jersey officials are asking drivers to tone down the big grins. So what's a happy person to do? Officials are telling drivers to channel their inner Mona Lisa.

"Yeah, Mona Lisa, a small smile is fine," MVC Chief Administrator Ray Martinez said. "My driver's license has a smile but what we really ask ideally is a neutral look."

Most drivers are okay with the new rule. As one person put it, you usually aren't smiling when a police officer pulls you over.