Screenshot copyright issues

Subject: Screenshot copyright issues
From: Matthew Harffy <Matthew -dot- Harffy -at- cramer -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 9 Aug 2005 14:47:41 +0100


This is my first post, so I apologise in advance if I breach any obscure
posting protocols!

What I want to know, and cannot find explicitly on the web, is the legality
of using screenshots of a different company's software in your software
manuals. In my case, our software is used in conjunction with Oracle
products, but I cannot find mention of third party use of Oracle screenshots
on the Oracle web site. I have found Third Party Usage Guidelines for
Oracle Logos ( and Third Party
Usage Guidelines for Oracle Trademarks
( but cannot find anything specific
to the use of Oracle screenshots in third party documentation. I have also
found Microsoft's Use of Microsoft Copyrighted Content page, which seems to
say that it is OK to use screenshots of Microsoft software

The tone of the Oracle stuff seems to be that they are happy for people to
use trademarks etc. if it is made clear that they are Oracle's trademarks
and I wouldn't imagine they would have a problem with a company using
screenshots of Oracle software in its manuals when that company produces
software which necessitates customers purchasing Oracle products in order to
run it. However, it would be nice to know for sure. Have any of you come
across this issue? Do you know if there is a definitive answer?

Thanks in advance,


Matthew Harffy
Technical Author
Cramer | Changing the Economics of Telecom

The Square, Lower Bristol Rd, Bath BA2 3BH
t: +44 (0)1225 327429
f: +44 (0)1225 327415
e: matthew -dot- harffy -at- cramer -dot- com


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