Originality is the aspect of created or invented works as being new or novel, and thus can be distinguished from reproductions, clones, forgeries, or derivative works. The term "originality" is often applied as a compliment to the creativity of artists, writers, and thinkers.
An original work is one, which is not received from others and not one copied based on the work of others. University students may be required to submit “original work” while also gathering relevant information obtained by others and citing sources.
Originality in law
United States Law
In the patent law of the United States and most other states, only original inventions are subject to protection. In addition to being original, inventions submitted for a patent must also be useful and nonobvious.
In United States copyright law and the law of many other states, copyrights protect only original works of authorship, a property which has been historically and legally linked to a concept of "creativity". A work must pass a threshold of originality in order to be copyrightable.
United Kingdom Law
- Original idea
- U.S. case law: Feist v. Rural, Bridgeman Art Library v. Corel Corp.
- Copyright protection of photographs in Switzerland - describes the criteria for the originality of photographs in Swiss law.
- In fiction narratology, an original is the first-published installment of a series of works, thus having sequels, prequels, interquels, etc.
- Synonyms: archetype, prototype (the first draft of an original work), model, template, and pastiche (an imitation of an archetype or prototype in order to pay homage to the original creator)