Nine reasons screenshots are awesome

Chris Dixon
2 min readNov 13, 2015


1. By taking a screenshot, you can “export” from any app on any device.

2. You can “import” screenshots back into any app that imports photos (most apps).

3. For these reasons, screenshots act like a universal file type on mobile. As @artypapers says:


4. Screenshots let you circumvent restrictions like file format incompatibilities, service non-interoperability, character limits, etc

Much higher engagement when text is inline

5. You can easily edit screenshots using simple tools that are bundled with most desktop and mobile operating systems:

You can’t do this with embeds

6. It’s easy to annotate screenshots:

7. On mobile, the photo roll where screenshots are kept is similar to a file system. You can delete photos, edit them, back them up to the cloud, etc.

8. You can combine otherwise incompatible formats in a single screenshot

The Awl calls these “shitpics”

9. Screenshots persist even when the thing screenshotted disappears:

And more:

What are some other reasons screenshots are awesome?