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This paper deals with the problem of the automatic classification of the disturbances affecting the quadrature amplitude modulation (QAM). This problem arises when a continuous monitoring system is needed for improving the quality of service in communication networks based on such a modulation scheme. In particular, a measurement method based on image processing is proposed. It automatically analyzes the constellation diagram and selects the disturbance actually present through a template-matching technique. The results of the first simulations, carried out on signals affected by different disturbances and signal-to-noise ratios (SNRs), are presented and discussed. Some experimental results are also given.