Micro-blogging site Twitter has made a small but significant change to how deleted tweets are shown when they are embedded in third-party websites.

Since at least the end of March, the social media network has started showing a blank box on external sites when an embedded tweet has been deleted, reports The Verge.

It is a big change from how Twitter used to handle deleted-yet-embedded tweets when it would preserve the original unformatted text.

With this recent change, that text is now gone, leaving a hole inside any story that embedded it.

According to Twitter senior product manager Eleanor Harding, the change was made "to better respect when people have chosen to delete their tweets".

But it also impacts any tweets that have been removed for other reasons, like when the account that posted them has been suspended.

News of Twitter's changes to embedded deleted tweets has emerged just hours after the company officially announced it was working on an edit button for the service, allowing users to change the contents of tweets after they've been posted.

The feature has prompted concerns that users will be able to edit statements that are an important matter of public record.