On Dec. 7 21 News received a Facebook message from a viewer who asked about an alleged deadly plane crash that happened earlier this week in Trumbull county. 

Attached to the message was a link to a suspicious video obituary of a real local person who died earlier this week.

So 21 News did its due diligence and searched for answers. 

As it turns out the plane crash never happened, and this was another case of a recent phenomenon called "YouTube Obituary Pirating."

YouTube obituary pirates are making a dishonest living by uploading videos of themselves reading parts of obituaries solely for financial gain.

21 News  spoke to the president of the Ohio Funeral Directors Association (OFDA) on the ethical and legal perspectives of this trend.

"They literally go to funeral home websites, they go to newspaper websites and they just collect obituary information," Michael Schoedinger, OFDA president, said.

Many of videos show men sitting alone and reading death records that they found online aloud, while telling people to subscribe to their channel. For youtubers, more subscribers equals more money.

Despite ethical concerns, Schoedinger said it is not an illegal activity.

He advised families to periodically search their loved ones name and if an obituary video pops up, petition to have it removed from YouTube.