From my limited game development experience, it would seem that it was the video card not being able to put the screen shot in its memory. I think its the card driver not the game.
That isn't a screen shot I took in game. I play in windowed mode when I know games are unstable because it's easier to recover without rebooting. The screen shot I posted in this thread is a print screen after it crashed. Then pasted it into a bmp file so I could show everyone else.
I've recently discovred that the blue screen crashes (BSOD) I was getting when ALT-TABBING out of STO is tied to specific settings of the texture quality sliders in my Video options. To me this suggests there is no 'sanity' checking going on with the texture resource requests and useage during gameplay.
I have a Nvidia GeForce 9800GX2 and tried playing with driver versions 196.21 and the beta 196.34.
I've yet to come across ANY game in the past 3 years that Blue Screens my system because I choose higher detail levels than my card / PC can handle because good quality software engineering checks for resources and memory availability first and handles any potential game-crashing problems using exception checking.
I'm therefore inclined to agree with the OP's observation that some dubious and sloppy memory / resource management is going on.