These days they don't make academics like they used to do, do they?' And for some of us this is cause for celebration rather than nostalgia or the wringing of hands. The academic — like God, history, or society — is dead, long live the academic! This chapter focuses on the ethnographic research role within the sociology of popular culture; an interest fuelled by the observation that so much contemporary work in this area is being carried out by younger and younger academics, many of whom are already immersed in their chosen culture prior to intellectual engagement with it. It describes an ethnography in itself, and at times it has felt as though we have been trying to take on entire history of sociology of culture. The chapter suggests that by examining how research is done, and exploring its mode of operation in the field of popular culture, one can see the emergence of a new type of sociological researcher.