1. the person is a small child, ie, younger sibling or friends sibling
2. the person is cute, usually younger, usually a girl
3. can be used on pet cats, dogs, etc..
-chan is mostly used by those in the anime community in america. chan is not often used unless you are familiar with that person and they are younger then you, or they are someone you are familiar with's younger sibling. since chan can mean cute, some boys looking to be manly may be a bit offended by it. also, it should be noted that the suffix chan is used mostly among friends. you wouldnt greet a freshman you dont know as chan, but perhaps as <their name>-kohai. (kohai meaning something along the lines of lower classman)
2. look at Felicia-chan's cute dress ^-^
3. Here comes Kitty-chan! What fluffy paws she has!
Their characteristic features are anonymous posting, content being quickly deleted once it becomes old, "sage"-ing, and an idiosyncratic and strange culture.
"Widdo C-chan, so kawaii!"
My recommendation is that you use it, sparingly, with a person of the opposite gender which you are attracted to, or already dating (for example). It should be used sparingly because he/she may not get it and may ensue egopatriotic attitudes against you for your multicultural behavior.
2. a common term used by white girls that have become overly obsessed with asian culture so that they have attempted to learn japanese and have inspired white guys to tattoo chinese characters on themselves and thus have invited all their other white friends to join this cult of fake asianness while calling each other by chan after their name
get a life.
also see: what annoys real asians
ashley: yeah me too!!...and your shirt is so kawaii karen-chan!!