Payments of Damages for Libel in the Press: an Empirical Research - This article describes the results of empirical research that analysed the area of civil cases and criminal proceedings requesting the payment of damages for press libel deriving from articles and books published by one of Italy’s leading publishers. Covering the period from 1 January 2000 to 31 December 2006, the cases total 162 in civil proceedings and 245 for criminal libel. In each case, the document studied was the final one for each level of judicial decision-making, or the act of agreement between the parties, in cases when they reached an out-of-court settlement. The survey selected two categories from the entire field of people who initiated proceedings, that of magistrates (the judiciary and public prosecutors) and that of politicians, grouping all the remaining ones into a single macro-category dubbed "others". The statistical results indicate clearly that the quantitatively greater payments of damages are attributable to the category of the magistrates. In addition, the average length of the judicial proceedings also varies with the category to which the plaintiff belongs; in particular, it increases significantly in the case of magistrates taking action for criminal libel and is reduced when the same category takes action for civil libel. So clear is the reading of the quantitative results in numerical terms that the author preferred to offer no interpretation of the data compiled, leaving them to speak to readers for themselves.