Online social networking site Twitter said Thursday it will begin deleting users' tweets in countries that require it - but it will still keep those deleted tweets visible to the rest of the world.
The move is significant because, until now, the only way Twitter could comply with countries' limits was to remove the content globally.
Twitter said it will now delete tweets only "reactively" and on a case-by-case basis and will let the affected user know why the content is being withheld.
"We hold freedom of expression in high esteem and work hard not to remove Tweets," Twitter spokeswoman Jodi Olson wrote in an e-mail to CNN.
"And just to be clear, this is not a change in philosophy and there are still countries to which we will not go," she said.
As examples of countries where tweets may have to be restricted, Twitter mentioned Germany and France, which ban pro-Nazi content. Twitter will operate in those countries while censoring pro-Nazi tweets, for example.
But some countries are so restrictive with freedom of expression that Twitter can't exist there at all, the company said.
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