I am looking for a noun to describe the role of "Person A" in the following scenario.

  1. Person A makes a digital project (e.g. a video game, animation, video, etc).
  2. Person B creates a digital project using Person A's project, either parts or the whole thing.

I am calling Person B's project a remix of Person A's project. Also, I am calling Person B a remixer.

What would you call Person A? Some of the terms I've used are but that I am not 100% happy with are:

  • remixee. I like this one but its a bit obscure and easy to visually confuse with the term remixer.
  • original creator. This is easy to understand but it's two words and it has the problem that it makes it seem as if the remixer is not original, which has a subtle but negative undertone.
  • originator.

Other ideas?

  • 1
    Interesting question. In a sense this word would be the mirror image of the plagiarist.
    – ogerard
    Commented Apr 24, 2011 at 18:31
  • I don't have any votes left for today, but progenitor is the best response you've received thus far, IMO.
    – Uticensis
    Commented Apr 24, 2011 at 18:46
  • @ogerard: well, plagiarist has a negative connotation. In this case I'm trying to acknowledge the positive aspects of remixing and come up with something more neutral.
    – amh
    Commented Apr 25, 2011 at 0:28
  • Person A is the meme'ist and person B is the meme'er.
    – logicbird
    Commented Apr 25, 2011 at 12:04
  • As an aside, the chain of derivatives from an original is often described as the work's providence.
    – Carl Smith
    Commented Jul 20, 2013 at 14:04

7 Answers 7


In copyright law, party B's work is called "derivative". The previous work is called "preexisting", so he could be described as the "preexisting author".



  1. An originator of a line of descent; a precursor.
  2. An originator; a founder: progenitors of the new music.
  • 1
    @pageman: please note that on SE sites, leaving a comment saying "+1" means that you have actually upvoted the post (which in this case you haven't).
    – RegDwigнt
    Commented Apr 24, 2011 at 21:15
  • Thanks. I am not 100% sold on this one but it is definitely a very good alternative.
    – amh
    Commented Apr 25, 2011 at 0:31

You might want to try out first party or principal.

  • Principal Author sounds unambiguous and clear to me. First Party sounds like contractual mumbo-jumbo.
    – Warren P
    Commented Apr 25, 2011 at 23:55




Interesting question :-)

  • Source could work. The others not so much because the remixer is also a creator and an author.
    – amh
    Commented Apr 25, 2011 at 0:30
  • I like source as well. It's also the name of a popular hip-hop magazine, a genre known for its musical sampling and remixing. Commented Apr 25, 2011 at 0:41

These are reasonable multi-word stabs:

  • "Author of the original work"
  • "Original Author"
  • "Principal Author"
  • "Prima facie Author"

I like your idea "originator" but it lacks zing, and it lacks the implied Authorial ownership, and thus, if you really really want to drop it down to a single word, I can only suggest using a term which preserves the dignity of their essential ownership:

  • "Author"
  • "Creator"

Then, for the derivatives, call them "Mixologists", "Mashupologists" or something like that.


Original Content Provider Original Copyright Holder (from a Creative Commons perspective)


Well, there is always victim.

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