Based on what I can see from the ODNR's latest map update, it seems Media Co (except the north tip) is considered "in the productive window" but only a mediocre contender for oil...you could call your county recorder's office to see if any companies have been looking at landowner records/researching mineral rights. If you can get a company name, it would give you someone to call...for most people I think they were contacted by letter to lease mineral rights, so someone came to them first. This site will also tip you off to know if a landowner group is forming in your area. Good luck! I'd also pay little attention to some of the barking that happens on here, or extreme opinions. There's a lot of armchair drilling experts around this place. If you get to the point where you really need advice, get a true oil & gas attorney. They'll tell it to you straight.
you are ahead of the game already, just knowing you don't know and want to find out. be patient. this is just getting started. you'll be able to sort through who is on the up and up. no hurry.
I'm also a Utica landowner in Belmont Cty and lived in Wayne Cty (Wooster and nearby) for many years. A year ago, I was a rookie in the Shale Play, horizontal drilling, etc., but had some experience with shallow vertical wells. Through monitoring this website closely and keeping close track of the O&G companies involved in the Utica and familiarizing myself with ODNR data, I feel I've become reasonably knowledgeable about what is going on. As others have advised you, it takes patience and perseverance.
I'd also recommend spending time on the drillers' websites (Chesapeake, Anadarko, Gulfport, Devon, Hess, etc, etc. You will be impressed with the info they post. Pay particular attention to their investors' presentations, which are usually in PowerPoint. Lots of unexpectedly pertinent data there. These guys are the experts.
Finally, ODNR publishes a wealth of info on their website. Be a little skeptical of their maps as they are based on a minimum amount of hard data (which they admit). The O&G drillers only release what they absolutely must to avoid helping their competition and pushing up lease costs. Finally, ODNR's info isn't particularly "user friendly". It will take you a while to figure out how to navigate the site.
Hope this helps and good luck on your "journey" ! The Utica Shale looks like "the real deal". The best indicator is the sheer number of O&G players in the Utica and the $$$ they've committed.
Watch very closely what happens with the Devon Energy well on Richman Rd near Lodi. That will be the greatest indicator to date of what potential may lie under Medina county. They began prepping that well for fracking this week.
Rumors persist that the Richman Rd well in Medina County will be a huge money maker, huge. The driller is of course Devon Energy. Rebekah, you could be in an attractive area for oil and wet gas production.
RE: "is there anyone who can give me an "Overview of Fracking/Drilling/Leasing for Dummies"????"
You are in the "Discussions" section of this website, if you go to the upper portion of this screen and "click" on the "hot button" titled "Information" it will direct you to some Primers on the subjects you mentioned.
Another thing you can do is a Google Search.
Type in the subject you wish to investigate and "Pennsylvania State University". PSU extension has presented useful information on many of the subjects for which you expressed an interest.
You can also check Ohio ODNR website (regardless of where you are, they present applicable generic information) and check the PA DEP site: http://www.portal.state.pa.us/portal/server.pt/community/marcellus_...
The bad news is that if you do a Google Search on Fracing alone - you will likely end up with hits directing you to thousands of sites run by and for the loony anti-fracers (it has become a religious cult for the factually challenged).
Everything you ever wanted to know about Oil & Gas and Fracking (and then some) ...
You may want to follow the Ohio Well Maps thread. Bics has created easy to use Google Earth maps of the Ohio gas wells. It will help you to see where the wells are in relationship to your land.
Oil and Gas Law in a Nutshell is not a book for dummies, but I don't think that you are a dummy.