I think the thing about smearing faces is usually if there is an issue around the person concerned, or they are specifically not to be ID'd. General crowd scenes do not count.
Actually it's interesting. Many towns have run photo comps, where they want shots of the town and such. The result will be for commercial gain, both by the winner and probably the Council. In theory you would have to get a release from everybody in a crowd scene! Maybe reason just steps in.