Talk:Ages of consent in South America

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Age of consent in Paraguay: website vs. legal source[edit]

It seems that the website – used as a source for the age of consent of 16 – has committed a mistake with regard to the Paraguayan age of consent, probably due to a misinterpretation of the text of the law. It is interesting to note that the website doesn’t mention any Paraguayan law nor it provides a link to the legal source.

I believe there is no better source than the text of the law itself. Article 137 of the Paraguayan Penal Code says:

“Artículo 137.- Estupro 1º El hombre que persuadiera a una mujer de catorce a dieciséis años a realizar el coito extramarital, será castigado con pena de multa. 2º Cuando el autor sea menor de dieciocho años se podrá prescindir de la pena.”

which reads:

“Article 137 – Estupro – 1º The man who persuades a woman from 14 to 16 to perform extramarital coitus (sexual intercourse) will be punished with fine. 2º When the defendant is under 18 the penalty may be disconsidered”.

The information treated the exception as a rule. The text of the law (see above) says clearly that the fine prescribed by this article applies only to men who engage in sexual intercourse with 14-16 married adolescents. There are no restrictions for sex with single females in this age range (i.e. a single cannot perform extramarital coitus with another single). The article probably was created to protect marriage at this early age.

Another interesting information is that, according to the Paraguayan Civil Code (see Article 39, clause “b”), the marriageable age in Paraguay is 14 for women and 16 for men, which seems to confirm the text of Penal Code’s Article 137. This section of the Civil Code says that “The legal incapacity of minors will cease: ...(b) for gentlemen of 16 and for women of 14 years completed, through marriage, with the limitations established in this Code”.

Therefore, I’m replacing the existing text (based on the source) with the previous one (based on an age of consent of 14) adapted for this exception of married adolescents, reintroducing the clause that deals with the age of consent of 16 for homosexual acts (Article 138 of Penal Code), and adding a remark at the end about the discrepant information.Paulo Andrade 01:23, 26 May 2007 (UTC)

You might want to come back in a day or two and have a look to see if it needs a copy edit for clarity. It might just be me, but I found it hard to understand what you have written. are good in the sense that if you send then an email with a correction and sources, they will generally correct their entry. However there's no way we can cite them as a source on any of our pages, they are not a primary or secondary source. Initially they were just a copy of, but have since taken submissions from readers who email them. Not a reliable source at all. Where I see them as an only reference I've been adding a {fact} tag or similar. --Monotonehell 06:26, 26 May 2007 (UTC)
There seems to be some cultural misunderstandings here (i.e. lost in translation): a) under 14? You'll go to jail! b) over 14 but under 16? You'll be fined! Traditionally, the word estupro in Paraguay (not in Brazil, where it means plain rape) refers to the cultural practice of the infamous "test of love", the male saying: "If you really love me, you'd have sex with me". There is where the Paraguayan expression "sex with a promise of marriage" comes from, and "extramarital coitus" might had come from and into this law. It is meant to protect virginity (it only applies to women), still an important asset in this society. Note that if the male is under 18 there are no consequences, as a boy at this age cannot reasonable promise marriage to anyone, but an adult can. Aldo L (talk) 15:48, 15 July 2010 (UTC)


It makes no sense to divide Latin America in 2 (and in so doing completely ignore Central America which ahs been included nowhere. I have changed the name and moved Mexioc here. North and Soyuth America are geographical entities, Latin America is a cultural entity, thus appropriate, SqueakBox 19:01, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

I disagree, using cultural divisions is a lot less accurate than arbitrary geological divisions. Cultural divisions have a lot more political heat behind them and are open to interpretation and heated discussion. Central America is part of South North America in the Seven Continent Model.--Monotonehell 21:26, 24 June 2007 (UTC)
I agree. Passing judgement on what are the boundaries of a 'cultural entity' has the potential to be very problematic. I don't see any need for abandoning the standard 7 continent model for a subjective cultural model. Also, Ages of consent in North America now suffers from an inaccurate name, because it excludes Mexico, at the very least. I advocate reverting the name of this article back to Ages of consent in South America, and moving the content about Mexico and Central America into Ages of consent in North America. -kotra 21:18, 3 July 2007 (UTC)

"Unfettered" age of consent[edit]

Look, it is a distortion and an euphemism to say that the "unfettered age of consent" in many countries of South America is 18. This definition makes the exception a rule, and the rule an exception.

If someone said, for example, that "the age of consent in New York is 13, although for non-married couples it can be 18", it would be *true*, but it would a twisted way of defining things. The marriageable age is 13 in New York but this is for emancipated minors, which comprise an exception to the rule.

The age of consent is not 18 in South America. It is 14 in Brazil, and it ranges from 13 to 15 in most countries, with a minimum of 12 for the federal law of Mexico (which can be raised depending on local Mexican laws).

In these countries marked with an "unfettered" AoC, there is legislation to punish *consented sex*, generally under the name of "corruption of minors", which refers to very specific situations like manipulation, false promises or deceit, and applies to adolescents between the age of consent and 18. Corruption of minors is not regarded as rape, and constitutes an exception when compared to the majority of relationships that count with parental approval. These crimes involving consented sex are generally only prosecuted through the initiative of the family, and constitute an exception to the rule - just like the cases of emancipation. As a rule of thumb, only cases involving a relationship of power (teachers, doctors etc.) or authority (parent or guardian) can be prosecuted by the state. Again these are exceptions to the rule.

Therefore, I´m changing the age of consent in Brazil back to 14, and rewriting the introductory text to a more clear text.

New text: "the general age of consent in Brazil is 14 with parental approval and 18 without parental approval, in both cases for heterosexual and homosexual acts".

I´m also willing to revert the other countries as well, over the next weeks, but only after reviewing carefully the texts.

I believe all texts should maintain a maximum non-POV approach, and must be written with care. The exceptions may be included in a complementary text, but they are not good to place in the first sentence.

It`s really interesting to remark that over time all distortions that may appear in Wikipedia happen coincidentally to raise the AoC, and never to decrease the AoC. This happened before with the age of consent of Portugal and later on of Paraguay. Now it happened with an entire group of countries in South America, and I don´t know if it did happen elsewhere.

I believe we all need to accept other cultures and other countries as they are. Nobody has to be like other one, but at least one has the right to know how others are, in an non-biased and non-distorted way. If you disagree, please read first alterity, ethnocentrism, diversity and multiculturalism. For instance, homosexuality is punished with death penalty in some Muslim countries, while in Spain, Canada or Netherlands, homosexuals can legally marry. The same happens with this issue of age of consent… Wikipedia should reflect the reality of each culture and each legislation as it is, and not like we would like it to be.User:Paulo Andrade

The concept of an unfettered age of consent is where there are no barriers to giving consent. If there needs be parental approval then that fetters the ability of one under 18 to completely give consent and not be open to legal action later. The new text reflects this and so I'm okay with it, but the point is that it says the same thing, just using different terms. The idea of using the unfettered AOC phrase is to bring all the Ages of consent in... articles into a consistent format. --Monotonehell 01:23, 4 July 2007 (UTC)

I understand that it is important to have a pattern; however this pattern may be distorted when the "unfettered" age encompasses only exceptional cases, and not the most common situations (e.g. a healthy, open relationship with parental approval, that involves no manipulation, deceit or seduction). The text of the orange box above says that: "The unfettered age of consent should be in bold text (...). Any exceptions to should then be discussed afterwards (close in age exceptions, same sex relations etc)".

The text assumes that legal relationships involving ages under the "unfettered age" are exceptional; this is simply not true where legal action cannot be initiated by the state, but only by parents that disapprove the relationship. Or where legal action is only possible in cases involving manipulation, and not in all the others.

It seems that the legal framework is different in the anglophone world when compared to countries that speak latin languages (Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, French). The examples given for exceptions (close in age, same sex) are exceptions that do not occur in Latin America (apart from Paraguay for same sex relations). Legal cases on the grounds of "corruption of minors", "seduction", etc. are the exception, not the rule.

Honestly, this criterion seems to be artificially inflating the ages of consent for some countries. Most countries have some sort of protection for relationships with ages under 18 (even when only for cases involving a relationship of authority, e.g. with teachers or parents), so the "unfettered" age will almost always be 18.

A complete revision of all countries could result in placing an unfettered age of 18 for most of them. The "unfettered" age in France should be then placed at 18, once French law has an article punishing relationships involving authority for ages 15-17...

Monotonehell, I ask you to please read and reflect on this comments and if possible reply with yours.Paulo Andrade 01:05, 27 July 2007 (UTC)

Considering that this article is about "age of consent". The way I've been approaching this is to state the unfettered age of consent, that is the age at which an individual is completely free under the law to give their own consent. Then state any younger exceptions to that, that's mostly been close in age exceptions where the ability of an individual to give their consent is partly fettered by law. I've struggled a little with this approach where there exists position of authority laws, as this too ostensibly fetters an individual's ability to give full legal consent. However I thought being in a position of authority sufficiently distinguishes the situation.
The reason for this approach is a cautionary one. It's from the desire to introduce the reader to the most pertinent age first, then to talk about exceptions to that. The most pertinent age is an unfettered age of consent. I think it best to lead with "safe ground" then to introduce the exceptions that allow younger aged circumstances. Note that an exception can very well be the norm. But it is still an exception.
If we are discussing the entire situation properly, I don't think we can be accused of inflating the AoC. I think it's important to lead with the corruption of minors law in cases like Brazil, as the state or parents can initiate prosecution, effectively meaning that true consent can not be freely given by the minor. Again, that's my reasoning behind leading with the unfettered AoC.
I see your point about the differing approach of some legislation and this is not limited to these Latino examples. Check out the Europe and Asia pages. There's apparently a similar attitude in Germany for example. But the fact remains that an individual in the lower age range is not completely free to give their consent. Taking Brazil as an example; up until 14 the law controls their ability to give full consent; up until 18 their parents control their ability to give full consent; and over 18 the individual has full control over giving their own consent.
We do need to rework the format of countries with such an approach in law to address your concerns. However we also need to be careful that we are not passing opinion on how a particular jurisdiction's authorities execute their law. I would also like for this reworked format to not be unique to just this page, it needs to be able to be adapted to to any entry in the Ages of consent in... articles.
Any thoughts on what such a framework might look like? --Monotonehell 04:33, 27 July 2007 (UTC)

Reply - Look, the concept of an unfettered age of consent as the first and most pertinent age of consent honestly seems a misconception.

I would like to understand what means here the word “unfettered”. If the word “unfettered” means “without any restrictions, without any barrier or protection”, then we can say that the unfettered age is in fact 18 almost everywhere and equals the age of majority. It’s not only legislation about corruption of minors or about the position of authority or trust (teachers, doctors, psychologists, school officials, etc, parents or legal guardians). It’s also legislation about child prostitution (the age of consent for prostitution), and legislation about the participation of minors in the production of sexually explicit content (child pornography). So if you say that the “unfettered” AoC in country X. is 16, this is not true if this country forbids child prostitution or child pornography for minors under 18.

This "unfettered age" of 18 could be added in the beginning of each continental page as an alert, or yet in the “age of consent” general article.

Take a look at the article “age of consent” in other languages and you'll realize that at least in four other languages – French, Italian, Portuguese and Spanish – the age of consent that is taken in account is the minimum age of consent, not the unfettered age. The very concept of “consent” varies between languages: in French for instance they have two concepts – the “sexual majority” and the age of consent. Observe that the articles in the English Wiki are the only ones so far that cover ages of consent in foreign language countries, so in a certain way what enters here may influence other Wikis in the future and vice-versa (although each one is independent to disagree with the other).

This “unfettered” age of consent in the English Wiki may look like POV when dealing with AoC in foreign language countries, especially when an exception is treated like a rule.

Maybe we should hear a third opinion, and it would be particularly interesting if it's a polyglot or someone who speaks at least two more languages.

I understand your point, and I wonder if you were motivated by the fear of feeling responsible if someone is arrested in the real world and says “but I read in Wikipedia that the age of consent here is…”. That’s why providing links to the legal sources (preferentially governmental links) is so important. This can be fixed with a link to the legal disclaimer page and maybe a small message in italic like “Wikipedia is not a legal counselor. If you need assistance, ask a lawyer”.

A cautionary approach may be OK, but not to the point of distorting the facts or becoming POV. Think about this. And please let me know what you think of all this.Paulo Andrade 05:43, 30 July 2007 (UTC)

Finally, you wrote:

“We do need to rework the format of countries with such an approach in law to address your concerns. However we also need to be careful that we are not passing opinion on how a particular jurisdiction's authorities execute their law. I would also like for this reworked format to not be unique to just this page, it needs to be able to be adapted to to any entry in the Ages of consent in... articles.”

I think where there are different ages of consent or different levels of protection, the most representative should come first (the one that is not an exception), or at least all levels of protection should be placed side by side in the same level of importance. Maybe we could create a table for each continent, with lines and columns, to present all levels of protection equally distributed (for example, age ranges in each column could indicate the validity of laws on corruption of minors, position of trust or authority, close in age exemptions, child prostitution/pornography and so on).Paulo Andrade 05:43, 30 July 2007 (UTC)

(edit break)[edit]

"...or at least all levels of protection should be placed side by side in the same level of importance..." I think that would be the most desirable way to present this information. Your comment above regarding "...motivated by the fear of feeling responsible if someone is arrested in the real world and says “but I read in Wikipedia..." is almost true. Although I'm not concerned that they will try to rest upon a Wikipedia article in court. What I'm more concerned with is they come away from reading the section they are interested in with the opinion that the lesser AoC is okay in all circumstances. Where in most jurisdictions there are caveats to most ages under 18. This would most certainly be the fault of the reader, but I'd like to get away from the situation we had before 2005 where the minimum AoC was presented in a lot of jurisdictions as the be all and end all.
I also think talking about prostitution clouds the subject a bit. I thought we had a mention that these articles' scope did not include a discussion of prostitution, but we've since added an outline of the child prostitution article in the the concerns heading and I think the introduction has been altered since then. Either that ot I've gone mad. ;) I think we should be focusing on the restrictions between two consenting individuals, where prostitution doesn't come into the discussion except where a jurisdiction interprets anti-prostitution legislation to ostensibly raise the AoC (check out Japan prefectures and Thailand), and where Position of Trust legislation is intended to protect the vulnerable but likewise a caveat that intrudes on general consent.
Tables would be useful, but past experience and a look at demonstrate that in the complexities of comparison you can't use a table. There's way too many little notable differences that you end up with an arm's length notes section. Also I think that this should remain a proper encyclopedic discussion and not degenerate into a list of dot points like the North American page tends to do.
I think it best to have a logical set of discussion points that is consistent in approach within all the AoC articles. My previous thinking was that the first age that was discussed should be the one in which the least thought needs to be made, ie the "unfettered" as I've been calling it. Then follow that by any exceptions that require more thought.
So for example in Imaginary-example-stan; Anyone over the age of 18 one can freely give consent to anyone else over the age of 18. But if one is under 18 you must put some thought into working out if they are over 14 and if they are within two years of your age. Also if one is in a position of trust one cannot accept consent from anyone in your care. - That was my logical progression of the current approach.
Let's examine your suggested approach and see if we can make it work. Moving forward, how do we decide on the "most representative"? I'm not completely sure I follow you on that point. --Monotonehell 07:01, 30 July 2007 (UTC)
Here are my further comments.Paulo Andrade 13:23, 4 August 2007 (UTC)
  • definition of unfettered - I think it would be interesting to make it clear for readers what is the meaning and the scope of the word “unfettered”, either in the text of the article(s), or in the orange box of the discussion page, or in both. A small explanation would be enough, ruling out prostitution for instance. Examples: “The unfettered age of consent refers to non-commercial consensual relations” or “ does not include prostitution”. It can rule out legislation on “position of trust” or authority as well, but I think this should be also included in the explanation to make the text more clear, like : “The unfettered age of consent does not refer to prostitution or to relationships based on a relation of trust or authority, such as those with parents, teachers, or guardians.”
  • ages side by side – As for the two different ages – the minimum age of consent and the unfettered age of consent, we could include (where applicable) both ages side by side, not giving preference to one or another. You wrote I think that would be the most desirable way to present this information.

This could be done in a format like this:

Country X (example)

  • Unfettered age of consent: 18
  • Minimum age of consent: 14

And then the text begins explaining the details. Please tell me what you think of this format.

  • global scenario - Analyzing the international scenario (just to facilitate the understanding of other readers unfamiliar with the subject), it seems (at least to my knowledge) that there are two different concepts of consent:
    • (a) the notion of sexual autonomy, meaning the full capacity to give consent (positive definition). This concept corresponds to this “unfettered age of consent” of the English Wiki and to the notion of “sexual majority” (“majorité sexuelle”) of the French Wiki.
    • (b) consent as consensual relations not legally defined as “statutory rape”, i.e. non-violent relations above this age are not assumed per se as sexual abuse, while under this age even non-violent relations are all assumed per se as abusive (negative definition, i.e., consent is defined as what is not legally assumed as statutory rape or presumed as sexual abuse). This concept corresponds to the minimum age of consent of the English Wiki, to the expression “l’âge du consentement” (“age of consent”) as referred by the French wiki (when they speak of other countries) and to the age of consent of other Wikis such as Portuguese or Spanish.

For some countries, these concepts override once both ages (unfettered age and minimum age) are the same, like in France (15), Italy (14), Spain (13) and Portugal (14 hetero, 16 homo).

On the other side, in most of South America and Mexico, for instance, you have these two different ages and for the age range between them you have some legal restrictions for consensual sex (like corruption of minors), however not classified as “statutory rape” (that is, not presumed as sexual abuse).

  • most representative age of consent - The “most representative” age of consent (meaning the “main” age of consent) as I suggested means the general age above which we have potentially the majority of relationships in society. For example, we rule out the law on “position of trust or authority” because it applies to a relatively small number of possible relationships (just a few people compared to the rest of society). We rule out the “close in age” law for the same reason (it applies to a potentially low number of relationships).

The “corruption of minors” laws require an extra observation, because generally they cannot be prosecuted by the State. The cases that are effectively brought to court represent only a very small fraction of the total of actual consensual relationships between adolescents and partners over 18. They usually cover specific situations like seduction, manipulation and deceit, and do not apply to the general relationship. Parental initiative is needed to bring the case to court, while police officers cannot interfere with the relationship unless and until parents make first a complaint. If you look up at crime statistics (example: state of São Paulo, Brazil, 2nd trimester 2007[1]), you may possibly find out that charges of consensual sex under the corruption of minors law are little less rare than cases of emancipated minors.

In Brazil at least, the corruption of minors law regarding consensual sex has the same status of the law on defamation, slander or injury (i.e. you must feel offended and you must want to file a complaint). While in America it may be common for anyone to file a complaint on anything (see Big Tobacco, etc.), this may be not the case in other countries. My perception (I may be wrong) is that few people have the willingness to concretely file a lawsuit on corruption of minors, because it refers to a non-violent crime, it usually takes time, it does not involve a financial compensation, and it’s much easier and effective for parents who disapprove the relation just to keep the partner away from the daughter or son, and if necessary force them to break up the relationship just threatening to file a complaint. The relationship must be known by parents (not always this happens) and it must include sexual acts for the lawsuit to be initiated. Many actual complaints involve cases of child prostitution where prostitution couldn’t be proven by authorities and then a parent that was not aware of the situation files a lawsuit on corruption of minors against the pimp.Paulo Andrade 13:23, 4 August 2007 (UTC)

I agree that clearly defining the scope and terms used in the articles is a good idea. I detest the idea of dot points however lol ... Not sure if you were suggesting we use dot points in the article or just making your points clear here. The reason I'm not happy with dot points is one of quality of contributions. I've noticed that on such pages as Ages of consent in Australia and Oceania where the existing entries were fully sourced and complete prose any subsequent additions have been generally following this level of quality. Whereas in Ages of consent in North America where several entries are awful dot pointed non-prose, subsequent additions have followed this format.
Dot point rants aside, would a brief summary sentence work better? For example something like:
  • In a jurisdiction where absolute AoC is 14 but some conditions are placed up until 18 (like espurto)...
In Exampleoneastan the age of consent is generally 14, however some restrictions apply to those under 18.
-Proper discussion of laws and situations below-
  • In a jurisdiction where the AoC is generally 18 but lesser close in age exceptions exist...
In Secondexampleberg the age of consent is generally 18, however there exist exceptions for those between 16 and 20.
-Proper discussion of laws and situations below-
  • In a jurisdiction where corruption of minors legislation is rigorously state prosecuted...
In Examplepolis the age of consent is set in law as 16, but local law enforcement regularly prosecutes those under 18.
-Proper discussion of laws and situations below-
Or similar phrasing. We'd need to be careful as some jurisdictions have a vastly different definition of Corruption of Minors legislations to others. Some US states and places like Thailand for example use them to bring state initiated prosecution often. Where as in other places the legislation is almost forgotten.
Regarding your two broad classifications of AoC legislation approaches, I think that they frame how the legislation is written and applied, and are an important point of the discussion. But they don't necessarily set the effect of the respective laws. Even in jurisdictions that have a very similar framing of intent of legislation we can see vast differences in their application. So I'm unsure if this would be a useful classification for our purposes.
...general age above which we have potentially the majority of relationships in society... That statement did ring true with me. However we'd have to tread very carefully in order not to potentially violate WP:NPOV and WP:OR. But what you said below that ...For example, we rule out the law on “position of trust or authority” because it applies to a relatively small number of possible relationships (just a few people compared to the rest of society). We rule out the “close in age” law for the same reason (it applies to a potentially low number of relationships)... does sound like a reasonable approach.
Would this approach be able to deal with jurisdictions where marriage is required, certain acts or homosexual relations are banned or allowed under differing conditions to others?

--Monotonehell 14:49, 4 August 2007 (UTC)

Monotonehell, sorry for this delay.Paulo Andrade 14:52, 26 August 2007 (UTC)

Marriage and same sex relations - I think that the issue of marriage is well covered in the marriageable age article, although that article needs to be completed with links to the legal sources.

As for same sex relations, I think where there is a different age for homosexual acts (like in Paraguay or in Portugal), the main age of consent should be given separately in the same sentence… Example: “the age of consent in Portugal is 14 for heterosexual acts and 16 for homosexual acts”. If there is still an unfettered AoC, then it could be: “the unfettered AoC in country X is 18, while the minimum age of consent is 14 for hetero and 16 for homo relations…”.

Introductory section - I have reflected about this whole legal framework, and I have concluded that maybe we should present an “introductory” section in the “AoC in Latin America” page with a brief explanation of the meaning of each age of consent, so as to avoid ambiguities and make the text more clear.

Please take a look at the draft below and tell me what you think and if you would suggest any improvements to the text.


In Latin America, many countries have two or more ages of consent, representing different levels of protection or restrictions for sexual activities with minors.

The unfettered age of consent indicates the age of consent without any restrictions, showing the age at which someone reaches full sexual autonomy with respect to the law. The minimum age of consent points the minimum age at which someone can legally give consent, however under certain restrictions or circumstances. Sexual acts with someone below this minimum age are legally considered as sexual abuse.

The extent and nature of these restrictions or circumstances vary according to the country and are explained below in the proper section.

Definition of pedophilia - Another important issue that we have not addressed here yet, is that what we put here could have an impact in the definition of pedophilia used in some of these countries. You know, pedophilia is primarily defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) [1] (ICD-10, see F65.4), the American Psychiatry Association (APA) [2] (DSM-IV, see 302.2) and the Latin America Psychiatry Association (APAL) [3] (in Spanish; see page 172, F65.4) as the sexual attraction in adults towards pre-pubescent children.

However, some secondary definitions use the legal concept of age of consent as a boundary for pedophilia (sexual relations between adults and someone “below the age of consent”). This may be OK where there is only one age of consent, but notice that where we have more than one age of consent, we should be very careful so as to separate correctly the situations legally defined as sexually abusive (frequently associated with pedophilia) from other situations not legally defined as sexually abusive, thus indicating clearly the minimum age of consent side by side with the unfettered one, in the same level of importance. We should be very careful so as not to artificially enlarge the definition of pedophilia, in case someone looks for this secondary definition. I think this is also a way of being cautionary here.

This is to avoid ambiguity, distortions and misinterpretation of the text after a superficial reading. You know, as a student of Journalism in the last semester of the course, I’ve learned that sometimes some journalists don’t do their homework (for example in this case, going after primary sources like WHO or APA) and some news are in fact produced after a superficial research (time is often a problem in closing editions). This varies according to the reputation/credibility of the media vehicle, sensationalism, the anxiousness in reporting first the facts etc., and sometimes according to the level of knowledge of the journalist with respect to the subject covered. Considering that so far Wikipedia has one of the most comprehensive, easy-to-find, intelligible and detailed information on age of consent over the Internet (at least that I know), always providing verifiable legal sources, I think we should take our responsibility for providing precise, clear and balanced information even for the superficial reader; not only for casual journalists, but also for students and professionals of other areas who are not familiar with these legal nuances and peculiarities, and who are willing to read just the first sentence.

Please let me know what are your thoughts on all this points.Paulo Andrade 14:52, 26 August 2007 (UTC)

(edit break)[edit]

What you said regarding "Wikipedia has one of the most comprehensive, easy-to-find, intelligible and detailed information on age of consent over the Internet" made me realise just how far we've come with this article since I first started pushing for authoritative references in the article. Cool! :)
Anyway, first to your point about defining pedophilia. This is a mine field and unfortunately any attempt to do such will turn this article into the quagmire of edit wars and semi-protection that the articles on that subject are. I firmly believe that we should state only what the legislation dictates, using the language of the legislation and never hit any of the hot button terms like the "p word". Shhhhh! ;) That aside, what you say about things in general I agree with.
Tailoring the introduction to cover terms that are common to several jurisdictions may be a good idea. However, if we consider how most readers will use these pages, that is skip to the section that they have interest in and read only that section, the casual reader may miss something if we put too much in the introduction. So we'd have to be careful there.
Perhaps we should drop the use of the term "unfettered" it seems to cause confusion for some. Maybe we need to spell it out something like: "The age at which there is no restrictions..." or similar? --Monotonehell 15:33, 26 August 2007 (UTC)
I agree that we should avoid the use of the "p word" as you say, and keep the text restricted to the legal terms. However, knowing the potential side effects of the way we present this legal information, we can at the same time be careful so as to present it in a balanced way.
As for the suggested introductory section, maybe we could reduce the text to one paragraph, just with the very basic info.
I think that dropping the term "unfettered" seems to be a good idea. This word can cause confusion for some. Your text seems to be reasonable: "The age at which there are no restrictions..." seems to be good, and this could be completed with "while the minimum age of consent is..." as we have discussed above.Paulo Andrade 15:26, 8 September 2007 (UTC)

Hello, Monotonehell. I have changed the article to reflect the consensual result of our debate in this talk page. Please let me know if you disagree with some of the changes or just improve them yourself. I also want to congratulate you for your position to improve the AoC articles in general with legal sources (as you showed above), which are crucial to determine the reliability of the information. In the future, when I have a little more time, my intention is to research and add new countries, like Venezuela or those in the Caribbean or Central America.Paulo Andrade 03:32, 18 September 2007 (UTC)


How come there's no entry for Venezuela? Dick Kimball (talk) 19:07, 28 May 2008 (UTC)


  1. ^ Corruption of minors in Brazil falls under the category of “contra os costumes” (“against the morals”). This category covers articles 213 to 234 of the Penal Code and includes also other crimes for all ages such as rape, sexual harassment, obscene act, and the exploitation of [adult] prostitution, which may help inflating a little the numbers.


Now, in Peru the age of consent is 18, not 14. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:20, 28 August 2009 (UTC) This is wrong. The law was ratified on the 21st of June 2007. The age of consent is back to 14. (talk) 03:12, 13 October 2009 (UTC)

Why do you keep changing it back to 18? It was GOING to be reconsidered in the Congress but it ended up in nothing, the age of consent is still 14 and you can see it in any updated Penal Code of Peru. - W. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:55, 25 October 2010 (UTC)


Half of the countries on the map have the wrong color, especially in Africa. Someone needs to go carefully through Ages of consent in Africa, Ages of consent in Asia, Ages of consent in Europe, Ages of consent in North America and Ages of consent in South America and correct the map. Or better, create a new map, the colors on this map are problematic, as they are barely distinguishable (eg 13, 14 are nearly the same on the map). The map cannot stay any longer in such a state. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:34, 9 December 2010 (UTC)


I removed most of the material (the section was tagged).

  • no sources were given
  • extremely bad translation/English - nearly impossible to understand in some cases
  • most of the laws cited were not about the age of consent anyway; it appears someone went through all sex laws of Colombia and dumped them here 2A02:2F0A:507F:FFFF:0:0:BC19:A331 (talk) 02:12, 28 September 2014 (UTC)

Age of consent in Trinidad and Tobago is 18, not 16[edit]

The image in this article showing age of consents across South America still shows Trinidad and Tobago's age of consent as 16. However, as the Ages of consent in North America article notes, the age of consent as of 2015 is now 18. Could somebody please correct the SVG file for South America to show Trinidad and Tobago's age of consent as 18? Sega31098 (talk) 21:04, 17 September 2017 (UTC)