The term "otaku" seems to have been introduced to anime fans in the US and other countries via Studio Gainax's "Otaku no Video 1985," a self-parody film.
Otaku, meaning probably "venerable house," refers to someone who has a devotion to a subject or hobby (not necessarily anime) to the point of not leaving home. For instance, an otaku fan of a particular movie star could quite possibly know all of the films s/he has been in, their birth date, time of birth, shoe size, favorite toothpaste, etc. Generally speaking, calling someone an otaku in Japan is an insult, implying that their social skills have atrophied or never even developed, due to their manic involvement in their chosen fandom.

In America, the term is used to denote a zealous fan, usually of anime and/or manga. Due to its introduction to most people's vocabulary through its tongue-in-cheek use in Gainax's film, "otaku" tends to have a much less dire definition overseas.

When dealing with Japanese people, however, it may be best to keep in mind the modern Japanese image of an otaku -- Someone who only leaves their home to eat or shop, if at all, with an overwhelming and unhealthy obsession about something. It can as easily refer to a stalker or sociopath as it can to a harmless anime buff.

Best to avoid the word altogether if one is not sure of the context in which it will be received.
Positive: "Oh, wow! Check it out: Neck-through, Floyd Rose locking tremolo and an optional push/pull coil tap!" (slaps forehead and laughs) "Man, I am such a guitar otaku, aren't I?"

Negative: "Stay clear of Toshi, man. He's such a RQ otaku, always online. Bet he's never actually even talked to a real-live girl before... You never know when he's gonna' snap, right?"
by Cobweb February 23, 2005

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Used by shitheads who watch anime and "love" Japanese culture, and think of themselves as a cool, relevant people who watch anime, despite the word meaning some loser who stays inside all the time and has absolute zero social skills and life in Japanese.

Keep calling yourself that and you will live up to the name.
Fucktard: Omigod, I love anime, that makes me an Otaku, right?
Me: Nah, it means you are a complete fucking loser. Call yourself that again please.
by ChronicClub June 23, 2016

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An Otaku is someone who watches large amounts of anime. Otakus are often diagnoses with sever down syndrome and other mental cancer. Otakus will try to push anime on you more often than not and brag about how much of a weeaboo they are. Currently, Otaku also try to blend into Asian culture. Otaku try to speak Japanese in shitty, high-pitched voices, and attempt to know so much about the country. The song "I Want to Go to Tokyo" is a prime example. There are other compilations on the internet that one can use to find out more about the autistic breed of Otaku.
"Jeremy is such an Otaku."
"Otakus should paint there walls with their brain matter."
"I'm such an Otaku, I watch more than fourty anime shows!"
"Otakus, please kill yourselves."
by AutistBanshee October 05, 2016

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Means "Nerd" in Japanese.
People who don't know it call themselves otakus because they love anime and they're addicted to it.
Like weeaboos,for an example,they love anime too much.

This isn't anything good if you're trying to use it when you know its meaning.

What it means is an Japanese Nerd.
He has been calling himself an "otaku" for a half year now. He still didn't realize at all it means a Nerd,in the Japanese genres.
by Lyu / Nyu July 29, 2015

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1. A person who is a big fan of anime.

2. An anime fanboy or fangirl.
Person 1: "Are you an otaku?"
Person 2: "Yes."
by TheAnimeLover1 October 17, 2014

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A Manga, Anime, and video game (particularly RPG) fan who is obsessed with anything Japanese and Japan in general because of anime and manga. The literal term in Japanese is derived from home, so basically it means a person who stays at home all the time. They shut themselves away from the world as their ability to socialize to normal people slowly deteriorate and even if they are not Japanese they want to be Japanese so badly. they learn Japanese so that they can watch raw anime episodes and read raw manga. This is the main golden achievement an Otaku can do especially when other Otakus are jealous of this amazingness. They wear clothing with Kanji and their favorite anime characters. They collect anime figurines, fill their walls with posters of their fav anime/manga, life size anime characters, manga library collections, and DVD boxsets (there is much more trust me). They probably have played every single Final Fantasy Game out there. Their favorite food to eat it Ramen, Ramune soda, pocky, sushi, and other various foods that come right out of an anime. They include words like "baka" and "nee~" or "Kawaii" in their everyday lives, yes, even if they do not speak Japanese. Basically just picture a creepy dude with glasses reflecting the glare of light from his HD TV in a dark room, eating ramen and everything anime filling the room. But not all otakus are like this! there are different levels of otakuness.
Otaku hentai dude
by nerdwad3000 May 21, 2010

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Unfortunately an extremely hated word, the definition for Otaku is, when you get right down to it, an anime obsessor. These (us) are people who love anime. They're obsessed, they're nerds, and they know it (True, from personal experience as an Otaku, and I still am a proud one!).

This doesn't mean that they have no social life. In fact their social life is about the same, if not better, than non-Otakus since there are just so many other Otaku out there to talk with!

Another myth is that they have no social life. WRONG! I have a fioncee` and we're both Otaku. I know guys who are Otaku who have girlfriends, too. Pretty good ones at that.

Just because you're an Otaku and will do pretty much anything for anime does not mean that you have no social life or ever will have one. True that it's mostly on the computer but not always, definitely not always.
I'm an otaku and proud of it! Anyone want to say otherwise? Let me reprase: Anyone want to have their bodies blown out on to the pavement?
by Alex W October 12, 2005

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Japanese word/adjective which roughly translates into "infatuated", "extreme fanatic", or "obsessed to the point of being borderline deranged."

mainly used to describe the Wapanese people who watch ridiculous amounts ofanime. they, in turn, will use the word to dsecribe themselves, as if they are actually proud of being otaku. they don't know that the word has a negative meaning to it.
1: I'm so otaku, I have all the latest Yu-Gi-Oh things, and I just bought the new Ayumi CD! So ureshii!

2: Jesus Christ...
by KRHimself September 03, 2004

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