from left to right, top to bottom: chichen itza
, christ the redeemer
, great wall of china
, machu picchu
, taj mahal
, and colosseum
new7wonders of the world (2000–2007) was a campaign started in 2000 to choose wonders of the world from a selection of 200 existing monuments. the popularity poll was led by canadian-swiss bernard weber and organized by the new7wonders foundation based in zurich, switzerland, with winners announced on 7 july 2007 in lisbon.
the new7wonders foundation said that more than 100 million votes were cast through the internet or by telephone. voting via the internet was limited to one vote for seven monuments per person/identity, but multiple voting was possible through telephone. hence the poll was considered unscientific. according to john zogby, founder and current president/ceo of the utica, new york-based polling organization zogby international, new7wonders foundation drove "the largest poll on record".
the program drew a wide range of official reactions. some countries touted their finalist and tried to get more votes cast for it, while others downplayed or criticized the contest. after supporting the new7wonders foundation at the beginning of the campaign by providing advice on nominee selection, the united nations educational, scientific, and cultural organization (unesco), by its bylaws having to record all and give equal status to world heritage sites, distanced itself from the undertaking in 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. after the final announcement, new7wonders said it didn't earn anything from the exercise and barely recovered its investment.
although n7w describes itself as a not-for-profit organization, the company behind it—the new open world corporation (nowc)—is a commercial business. all licensing and sponsorship money is paid to nowc.
the foundation ran two subsequent programs: new7wonders of nature, the subject of voting until 2011, and new7wonders cities, which ended in 2014.