Back in the day you might have called them “train otaku” but they would have preferred “tetsudo fan” a Japanese translation of the British “railfan” label for those who enjoy riding, viewing, and appreciating everything about railway transportation.
Around the turn of the millennium a new Japanese term for train buffs arose: tetsu (iron). The name also has many derivatives such as “tetsuko” for a female train enthusiast, and “hitetsu” (non-ferrous) for people who are train laymen. Two main groups of tetsu are noritetsu (iron riders) and toritetsu (iron filmers).
The latter of these two are the focus now, as there has been an increasingly troubling trend of rude and dangerous behavior from what many would assume to be the tranquil hobby of train photography. The following are five examples.