Akiba-kei or Akiba-chan is a Japanese slang term similar in meaning to otaku.more...
Akiba-kei literally means "Akihabara style," referring to a district in Tokyo filled with stores selling electronics, manga, anime merchandise, and other products designed to appeal to the otaku subculture.
Akiba-kei particularly refers to men in their 20's and 30's who live in or around Tokyo and spend their leisure time in Akihabara. Their interests are particularly focused upon idols, erotic PC games, model figurines and manga. However, occasionally this also refers to young people (often including women) who look like a geek (otaku), even if he or she is not actually one or has never been to either Akihabara or any other 'geek-chic' place. More or less, now Akiba-kei is used as a synonym of 'creepy people'.
It may be used self-mockingly by Akiba-kei themselves or their friends, neutrally by Akiba-kei amongst themselves, or negatively similar to the English term geek; although in wider Japanese culture the term "otaku" is in more common use, and has the generally negative connotation.
The term was popularized in mainstream Japanese culture as a result of the 2005 movie, and subsequent television series, Densha-otoko.
Originally the Japanese term for "house (more specifically, your house" in the honorific form of the language, made by adding the prefix "o-" to the word for house "taku." It can also be used as an honorific second-person pronoun.more...
Today, the word has taken on a different meaning: it refers to a person who has had or is in the middle of having an intense hobby, which is usually added before the word itself. See the example below (1).
The connotation of the term varies in relation to the speaker and how much said speaker knows about the actual context in which it should be used. Especially common among American fans, an otaku is simply a very devoted follower (2). However, the word has a harsher, more negative connotation in Japanese. It is a term that refers to the receiver of the description is a very reclusive, sociopathic person who has a severe addiction to any form of media and (in some cases) will rarely, if ever, leave his or her house to meet minimal living requirements or obtain more of said media (hence the term otaku derived from its original meaning refering to a house)(3). It is not to be confused with the term "hikikomori," or a person/people who has/have withdrawn from society. It is a dire insult, especially to those who do not actually fit the category of otaku.
Otaku (plural) are generally looked down upon in Japanese society, constantly derided for their passions. These insults may or may not have a penny's worth of truth, but they base themselve...