New7Wonders of the World (2000-2007) is a campaign launched in 2000 to choose the wonders of the world from a selection of 200 existing monuments. The popularity survey was conducted by Swiss-Canadian Bernard Weber and organized by the New7Wonders Foundation based in Zurich, Switzerland. The winners were announced on 7 July 2007 in Lisbon.
The New7Wonders Foundation said more than 100 million votes were cast over the Internet or by phone. Internet voting was limited to one vote for seven monuments per person/identity, but multiple voting was possible by telephone. As a result, the survey was considered unscientific. According to John Zogby, founder and current president/CEO of the Utica- New York-based polling organization Zogby International, the New7Wonders Foundation conducted “the largest survey ever recorded.”
The program has generated a wide range of official responses. Some countries have touted their finalists and tried to get more votes, while others have downplayed or criticized the contest. After supporting the New7Wonders Foundation at the beginning of the campaign by providing advice on the selection of candidates, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has, under its regulations, the obligation of all register and give equal status to World Heritage sites. 2001 and again in 2007.
The New7Wonders Foundation, established in 2001, relied on private donations and the sale of broadcast rights and received no public funding or taxpayers’ money. After the final announcement, New7Wonders said it had gained nothing from the exercise and had barely recovered its investment.
Although N7W describes itself as a non-profit organization, the company behind it – the New Open World Corporation (NOWC) – is a commercial enterprise. All licensing and sponsorship funds are donated to NOWC.
The foundation then organized two programs: New7Wonders of Nature, the voting topic until 2011, and New7Wonders Cities, which ended in 2014.
Location of New7Wonders Winners. The Great Pyramid of Giza, the largest and oldest of the three pyramids in Egypt’s Giza necropolis, is the only survivor of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.
The United Nations
In 2007, the New7Wonders Foundation partnered with the United Nations in recognition of its efforts to promote the UN Millennium Development Goals.” The United Nations posted on its website:
The New7Wonders campaigns aim to contribute to the process of improving the well-being and mutual respect of citizens around the world, by encouraging interaction, expression of opinions and direct participation through voting and surveying issues that are popular and understandable to all.
– United Nations Partnerships Office
However, the United Nations Educational, Science and Culture Organization (UNESCO), in a press release of 20 June 2007, reaffirmed that it had no connection to ‘private initiative’. The press release concluded:
There is no comparison between Mr Weber’s high-profile campaign and the scientific and educational work resulting from the inclusion of sites on the UNESCO World Heritage List. The list of 8 new wonders of the world will be the result of a private company reflecting only the opinions of those with access to the Internet and not the whole world. This initiative cannot, in a meaningful and lasting way, contribute to the preservation of the sites elected by this public.
In Brazil, a campaign called Vote no Cristo (Vote for Christ) was supported by private companies, including telecommunications operators who stopped charging voters for making phone calls and text messages to be able to vote.  In addition, leading corporate sponsors, such as Banco Bradesco and Rede Globo, have spent millions of reals to ensure that the statue is voted among the top seven. Newsweek reports that the campaign was so ubiquitous that:
One morning in June, the people of Rio de Janeiro woke up with a text message on their mobile phone: “Press 4916 and vote for Christ. It’s free!” The same lot has appeared all over the city since the end of January. It appeared on an electronic screen every time city dwellers passed their transportation cards on city buses and resounded on television infomercials featuring a reality TV celebrity posing next to the brand of city trade. Statue of Christ the Redeemer.
– Elizabeth Dwoskin, Newsweek
According to an article in Newsweek, about 10 million Brazilians voted in the contest in early July. This number is estimated because the New7Wonders Foundation has never published such details about the campaign. A plane message, with a huge inscription “4916 VOTE FOR CHRIST” flew to Rio de Janeiro for a month.
An intensive campaign by the Peruvian Ministry of Trade and Tourism in Peru had a considerable impact on the media and, as a result, the Peruvian people voted overwhelmingly for their national wonder. The announcement of the new wonders of the world raised high expectations and the election of Machu Picchu was celebrated nationally.
The Chilean representative of the Moais of Easter Island, Alberto Hotus, said that Weber had sent him a letter saying that the Moais had finished eighth and were morally one of the Seven New Wonders. Hotus said he was the only participant to receive such an apology.
A campaign to promote the Taj Mahal in India accelerated and reached its peak in July 2007 with news channels, radio stations and many celebrities asking people to vote for the Taj Mahal.
Queen Rania Al-Abdullah of Jordan joined the campaign for Petra, Jordan’s national treasure.
There was a campaign in the news to encourage people to vote for Chichen Itz.
The other 13 finalists, chronologically, were:
- Five Wonders Of The World By Unesco
- Seven Wonders Of The World Names In Tamil
- Seven Wonders Of The World With Name And Location
- 7 Wonders Of The World On A Map
- Seven Wonders Of The World Modern Day
- 7 Wonders Of The World Names In Malayalam
- United Nations Costumes Around The World
- Seven Wonders Of The World Name In Hindi
- Wonders Of The World Images
- Five Wonders Of The World Cited By Unesco