John Campbell and the show that bears his name are "scapegoats for a bigger issue at MediaWorks", according to one media commentator.
The death knell has officially sounded for Campbell Live, which is set to be replaced by a mystery new current affairs show four nights a week.
Martin Gillman, partner at MG Communications, said the departure of its long-serving host and veteran broadcaster is a sad day for journalism.
"He'll be greatly missed. I think he's the nicest person in broadcasting, so it's tragic that he's going.
"He's become the scapegoat for a bigger issue at MediaWorks, which is the fact that the 6pm to 7.30pm slot is not performing as well as it needs to."
MediaWorks' revenue is directly proportionate to the size of the audience it can deliver, Mr Gillman said.
For quite some time now the audience for 3News, and as a result Campbell Live, has been waning, he said.
Mr Gillman believes the company is right to do something about Campbell Live's time slot.
"One of the reasons the audience is flagging is because the news audience wasn't delivering a good audience into the 7pm slot."
While it might sound bizarre, the problem stems back to the loss of Australian soap opera Home and Away, Mr Gillman said.
The show delivered a good audience boost into 3News; when MediaWorks lost Home and Away, the news audience dipped.
Mr Gillman said there is always a conflict between the commercial and news decisions.
"Because providing good news doesn't necessarily mean you get the biggest audiences."
That's why news worldwide is increasingly moving toward a more tabloid version of itself, he said.
"We all lament the quality of news but the numbers are going the other way."
Radio New Zealand declined to comment on the axing of Campbell Live and whether it is considering approaching John Campbell.
However, sources have told the New Zealand Herald that Radio New Zealand has expressed an interest in him joining the team.