Re: Screenshots of GUI: copyrighted?

Subject: Re: Screenshots of GUI: copyrighted?
From: wolf -at- nemasys -dot- com
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Mon, 10 Dec 2001 09:43:28 -0800 (PST)

Hi, Diane;

On Fri, 7 Dec 2001, D Boos wrote:


> One thing surprised me. I have taken classes in web development and
> graphics. We were told to copy pictures and/or code then alter it. This was
> supposed to prevent copyright violation. From what I learned while doing my
> research, I don't think it does.
> The definition of copyright clearly states that the creator has the right of
> its use and its derivatives. Wouldn't a graphic I copied and altered be
> considered a derivative?

Yes, it would, under USA copyright laws. Circular 14, "Copyright Registration
for Derivative Works" ( is quite
specific; you would have to make substantial changes to an original work for
it to qualify as a completely new work.

A very interesting statement in Circular 14 reads:

"Only the owner of a copyright in a work has the right to prepare,
or authorize someone else to create, a new version of that work."

The concept of "fair use" implies to me that modified copies of a copyrighted
item may be used - for example, satire for one. See Circular 21 at

A good resource for USA copyright law is

Hope this helps;


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Re: Screenshots of GUI: copyrighted?: From: D Boos

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