ManOTo

On air since October 28th, 2010, ManOTo (Me and You) is an independent London- based Persian-language television network aiming primarily to develop and launch television programming for Iranians. The channel is a part of Marjan TV Corporation, owned by husband and wife Marjan and Kayvan Abbasi.

Programming consists of feature films, music videos, mini series, reality shows, interviews and news. Sixty percent of ManOTo’s programming is original content created in the Marjan TV Network studios. ManOTo is most popular amongst Iranians for its runaway hit “Googoosh Music Academy,” an Iranian version of “American Idol,” where artists compete for $10,000 based on viewers’ text or phone votes, and featuring Iranian pop icon Googoosh as its Simon Cowell.

ManOTo’s popularity can be gauged by how frequently the channel is jammed in Iran. Although the channel is in essence an entertainment network, authorities in Iran view satellite network channels such as ManOTo as part of a larger cultural “soft war” waged by the West on the values of the Islamic Republic.