UPDATED 15.33pm: The Herald's editor has released a statement responding to claims the woman at the centre of the John Key ponytail pulling incident was misled into giving a media interview.
In a statement, Shayne Currie has rejected the woman's claims Rachel Glucina tricked her into giving the interview by posing as a public relations professional.
However he appears to concede there was some confusion about her role in the situation.
"When I spoke to the owners, they told me they had initially thought Rachel was working on a statement to go to all media, along with the photograph,” he says.
"Given the situation, I wanted to ensure they were satisfied with the quotes they had given Rachel and took the rare step of agreeing she should run the quotes past the parties before publication. No objections were raised."
Ms Glucina has links to Hip Group's owners through her brother Henry, who works within the organisation.
But media commentator Janet Wilson says her treatment of all three people has been poor.
"If you've got a photographer with you and that photographer is from the Herald, what is happening is the person you’re interviewing’s ignorance of the process of journalism is being called into question and being exploited," she says.
Mr Currie says he spoke to the owners of Hip Group - the company which owns the cafe the woman worked at - and was told they thought Ms Glucina was working on a statement to go to all media.
However he told her to clarify the situation with all parties, and was informed they were all aware what was going on by early evening.
Rachel Glucina approached the Hip Group yesterday after The Daily Blog broke the story. She knows the Hip Group owners personally. Glucina wanted to follow up the Daily Blog post and says she urged the couple to front-foot the issue.
She spoke to the couple and the waitress over the telephone. Regardless of any confusion over the initial approach, all three agreed they wanted to make a public statement.
They also agreed to pose for a photograph and a Herald photographer was dispatched. They were told by the photographer that the photo would be appearing in the Herald.
Herald editor Shayne Currie also spoke to the owners of the Hip Group yesterday afternoon following a call from a PR firm that had already been helping them.
"When I spoke to the owners, they told me they had initially thought Rachel was working on a statement to go to all media, along with the photograph.
"Given the situation, I wanted to absolutely ensure they knew this interview and photograph were for the Herald. To further ease any concerns, we took the very rare step of agreeing Rachel should run the quotes past the parties before publication.
“By then, no one was in any doubt that the article, quotes and photograph would be appearing in the Herald.”