Ecchi is derived from the Japanese pronunciation of the letter "H", the first letter in the word hentai (as spelled in romaji). Ecchi is another way to say "perverted" in Japanese, but its connotation is not as strong as hentai. Anime that contain a lot of sexual humor but no outright pornography are often referred to as ecchi, examples include Love Hina and to a lesser extent Ranma 1/2.
Chotto Ecchi (chotto meaning "slightly") refers to anime that has some light sexual themes.
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