The borough of Media is the county seat of Delaware County, Pennsylvania and is located 12 miles (19 km) west of Philadelphia. Media was incorporated in 1850 at the same time that it was named the county seat. Its school district is the Rose Tree Media School District with Penncrest High School and Springton Lake Middle School. In June 2006, it became the first fair trade town in America. The history of the area goes back to William Penn, but the area remained predominantly rural until the twentieth century. The Delaware County Institute of Science was founded in Media in 1833, while the Pennsylvania Institute of Technology, a two-year technical college, Williamson Free School of Mechanical Trades a three-year technical college, and Delaware County Community College, a two-year liberal arts college, are located nearby. Media promotes itself as “Everybody’s Hometown”.
In June 2006, Media became the first town in the United States to follow over three-hundred towns in Europe in attaining fair trade certification. To meet the criteria for certification, Media passed a council resolution in support of fair trade, serve fair-trade coffee and tea in local government meetings and offices, ensure that a range of fair-trade products were available in local restaurants and businesses, raise popular support and provide media coverage for the fair-trade campaign, and convene a fair-trade steering committee to ensure continued commitment.
Media may be best known for secret government documents that were illegally seized there by activists in 1971 and distributed nationwide. On March 8 of that year, the Citizens’ Commission to Investigate the FBI raided an FBI “resident agency” in Media. They later released thousands of documents to major newspapers around the country. These documents revealed controversial and illegal FBI tactics, like the recruitment of Boy Scouts as informants, and confirmed for the first time the existence of COINTELPRO, an FBI program to “expose, disrupt, misdirect, discredit, or otherwise neutralize” dissident groups in the United States.