Because it is illegal to post any sort of pro-Nazi message in France or Germany, Twitter bans all pro-Nazi messages on a global scale. Similar restrictions exist for different cultures and governments around the world, which ends up with an extensive amount of Twitter censorship. That may soon be a thing of the past, though, as Twitter has announced a new way to restrict specific content on a regional basis.
In an official blog post, the microblogging site explained that it now has the ability to ” reactively withhold content from users in a specific country — while keeping it available in the rest of the world. We have also built in a way to communicate transparently to users when content is withheld, and why.” This change goes into effect as of today.
The blog post goes on to say that if and when a Tweet is restricted, users will be notified and the message will be clearly marked. No doubt this move will pave the way for new controversies. After all, there were probably very few people who despised Twitter’s global policy against posting pro-Nazi content. But free speech is always a good thing, and if Twitter can limit the amount of censorship while still adhering to local laws, that’s a definite win.