اکثر آثار خلاقانه، اثری مشتق از چیز دیگری هستند اما در اکثر موارد حق تکثیر آنها به دلایل مختلفی مورد ادعا قرار نمیگیرد. مثلاً در مورد عکسها استثنائات شامل مواردی همچون خلاقانه نبودن، کاربردی بودن، آزادی پانوراما، تحت مجوز آزاد بودن و ... است.
Many creative works are derivative works of something else, entitled to their own copyright. A derivative work is one which is not only based on a previous work, but which also contains sufficient new, creative content to entitle it to its own copyright. However, if the underlying work is still copyright protected, the original copyright holder must also license the underlying work for reuse. In other words, a derivative work is not merely a work that is "based on" another work, a derivative work is considered a new work because of some significant amount of additional creativity that went into its production— all subsequent works based on another, previous work but lacking substantial new creative content are merely considered copies of that work and are entitled to no new copyright protection as a result and should not be referred to as "derivative works", as this has a very specific meaning in copyright law.