Tag Archives: York

YouTube is opening a production ‘Space’ for video creators in New York next month

YouTube is opening another of its studio “Spaces” in New York to help its community of video makers learn, collaborate and create new content. The facility follows similar setups in London, Los Angeles and Tokyo, which give aspiring filmers and internet personalities, which are attributable to much of YouTube’s success, access to equipment and industry experts. The treasure trove of video-making kit will include cameras, lights and boom microphones – some of which will be available to loan – as well as permanent and rotating sets, sound stages and post-production facilities. The fourth YouTube Space will open next month at…

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Microsoft will open a flagship store at 677 Fifth Avenue in New York

Microsoft is opening a new flagship store in New York City. The company has signed a lease for a space at 677 Fifth Avenue and plans for it to be the “centerpiece” of its retail ambitions. “This is a goal we’ve had since day one – we were only waiting for the right location,” David Porter, Microsoft’s Corporate Vice President for Worldwide Retail Stores said. “And now we have it.” Similar to Apple’s iconic stores, Microsoft wants it to be more than a place where you simply buy Lumia smartphones or a Surface Pro 3. The software maker says there…

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The New York Times Ignores the Facts In Tennessee

The New York Times Ignores the Facts In Tennessee
For weeks before Thursday's election, they bombarded Tennessee with ads depicting them as “soft on crime,” hostile to business interests and supporters of “the Obama agenda” and “Obamacare.” But this was all nonsense: In fact the judges never ruled on …
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BYRON YORK: Knowledge undercuts Obamacare support
Democrats have long believed Obamacare would become more popular once it was fully in place and Americans got a chance to see it up close. So why is Obamacare less popular now than a few months ago? Because it is fully in place and Americans have …
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Fact check: GOP Pryor ad headed for the hall of shame
Another gross distortion is the ad's claim that Pryor voted "to give members of Congress special benefits to purchase Obamacare." That's absurd. Pryor supported continuing the same employer payments for health insurance that members of Congress have …
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Facebook lifts the lid on its battle against New York court’s ‘unprecedented’ user data request

Facebook has been striving for transparency in its dealings with various law enforcement agencies around the world, particularly with its Government Requests report which was first released in August 2013, but it faces several challenges. To illustrate this (and reassure users of its transparent approach), the company has just revealed details of its fight against a set of sweeping search warrants issued by a court in New York last summer. As reported by Bloomberg, the case concerned an investigation conducted by the Manhattan District Attorney to weed out people suspected of cheating to obtain disability benefits. Facebook’s deputy general counsel, Chris…

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New York State Health Exchange Exceeds Federal Results

new york state health exchangeAs of December 16, the New York State Health Exchange, the official Affordable Care Act online marketplace, saw 363,258 completed applications from New York residents. In addition, 134,622 New Yorkers had enrolled for health insurance coverage to be effective on January 1, 2014. That number represented a 34 percent increase over the 100,881 who had enrolled through December 9.

New York residents, as with all Americans, have until March 31 to sign up for a qualified health plan to be in compliance with the individual mandate as required by the ACA. The first date an ACA plan can be effective is January 1, 2014. To meet that effective date, New Yorkers had to enroll in and pay the first month’s premium for a plan by midnight on December 23.

New York State Health Exchange Performs Better than Federal Exchange

Unlike the problematic federal health insurance exchange, HealthCare.gov, the New York State Health Exchange is on pace to meet or exceed the state’s enrollment goals. However, there are still some consumers who have had difficulty signing up through New York’s website. Some users have said they are frequently confronted with system outages and have spent several hours on the telephone trying to reach someone for help.

Not only that, but some consumers have still not received confirmation of coverage, even if they were one of the first to enroll. Once they finished the enrollment process, they often reported a sense of relief and accomplishment, since the path toward coverage was anything but easy. The navigators hired to help residents make their way through the system have also been relieved to reach the end and receive that “congratulations” screen that signals they have made it through the process.

Enrollment Data Not Released

Even though the New York State Health Exchange is clearly outperforming the federal website, there are still some unknowns in terms of what types of residents have enrolled in the plans. The state Health Department has not provided the public with any breakdowns of the data, so it is uncertain whether or not the enrollment numbers include more young and healthy residents or more sick and elderly residents.

Younger and healthier residents are necessary for the financial success of the ACA. Their premiums are needed to balance out the expected higher medical costs of the older and sicker enrollees who may have not had insurance for many years, if ever. The state Health Department has said it does not have that data yet and describes the enrollment situation as “fluid.”

New Yorkers’ Rates Lower on Average

In contrast with many markets throughout the country, New York is seeing much lower premiums. In fact, people who purchase their policies through the New York State Health Exchange are finding rates are as much as 53 percent lower than what they were paying in 2013 for similar coverage. In addition, many residents are able to reduce their costs even more in the form of federal tax credits designed to help low- and middle-income families pay for their insurance coverage.

For instance, one New Yorker who had coverage through Healthy NY, a program designed for hard-to-insure individuals that will expire on December 31, for $ 269 per month, was able to find a Silver level plan through the state exchange for $ 195 per month. Moreover, she was able to add a dental plan for just $ 15 per month.

Another resident , used to pay $ 518 per month for a plan through BlueCross BlueShield. Once he was able to make it through the complicated enrollment process, he found a plan through Health Republic that will cost just $ 366 per month. The $ 150-per-month savings will be a welcome windfall for the self-employed individual.

Call Center Busy

Since its debut on October 1, the New York State Health Exchange customer service center has responded to almost 300,000 calls. The volume is ratcheting up in advance of the enrollment deadline for a January 1 effective date. Although consumers reported long wait times initially, the exchange has added extra employees to help handle the extra volume.

More than 5,000 certified assistors or “navigators” are available throughout the state to help New Yorkers apply in person. Navigators at one in-person help center have answered close to 1,300 calls and have scheduled over 250 appointments. They are completely booked until well into January.

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