by Jessica Ledford
“Our Heritage Is Our Future” is the campaign motto for the New 7 Wonders of the World (N7W) project that is allowing the world to give their vote and take control by becoming a part of their own heritage as well as making a change for the future.
Many people are asking why we need a New 7 Wonders of the World. Much like the Olympic Games were revised in 1896 from their prior ancient games, the New7Wonders Foundation is trying to accomplish similar results. The Wonders have not been updated for 2,000 years. The only remaining of the original Ancient 7 Wonders of the World are the Pyramids of Giza in Egypt, which are still in the running for N7W. Unlike the Olympic Games, which were revised by one man, the New 7 Wonders of the World will be chosen by global vote.
What were the Ancient 7 Wonders of the World? Say hello to…
The Temple of Artemis
The Hanging Gardens of Babylon
The Colossus of Rhodes
The Mausoleum at Halicarnassus
The Lighthouse at Alexandria
The Pyramids at Giza (*the only Wonder still remaining)
The Statue of Zeus
Bernard Weber, whose mission is to “protect human kind’s heritage across the globe”, created the New7Wonders Foundation in 2001. There has never been an honest consensus of opinion on the last 2,000 years of human achievement. With the Internet as such an incredible means of transferring and giving information globally, the foundation is encouraging the population of the world to partake in the free vote that enhances and unites our global heritage.
The funding for the campaign started with the foundation’s founder, Bernard Weber, who produced most of the start up cost with a small number of members. Having enjoyed success as a filmmaker, museum curator, aviator, and explorer, Weber is now succumbing to his ultimate passion: world travel, cultures and humanity. Born in Switzerland and living in Canada, Weber is fluent in five languages and brings his immense global experiences to bear on his most important project to date. Revenue raised for the foundation, which includes many donations, will continue to pay for running the project, while the surplus will go into a fund to help monument preservation of the New 7 Wonders as well as start new projects.
This is one of the world’s first global votes. Living in a country such as the United States, the ability to vote is often taken advantage of. Some countries never have the option to vote for anything, which makes this opportunity to get the people of the world’s opinions particularly interesting. Millions have taken part in the making of the N7W, and it is expected that many more will continue to vote. The New 7 Wonders of the World Tour began on September 5, 2006, at The Acropolis in Greece. The promotional tour stopped at each one of the 21 finalists to support the monuments and encourage people to vote. The tour ended on March 7, 2007, with its last stop at the Statue of Liberty in New York City.
The 21 Finalists are…
Great Wall of China
Pyramids of Giza (an Honorary New7Wonders Candidate)
Statue of Liberty
Sydney Opera House
There are many candidacy and criteria rules that were followed to construct the first list of seventy-seven possible New Wonders (say adieu to non-finalists Leaning Tower of Pisa, the Golden Gate Bridge, the London Eye, the Panama Canal and so on…what a tough vote!). These rules considered many aspects of the overall structure including: time span (from the earliest time that man began to make his mark on the earth until 2000 AD), structure quality, geographic dimension, artistic, cultural, and architectural value, diversity and ability to reflect and celebrate cultural and social diversity, and recognition factor (universally recognizable).
Voting for all of these nominees continued until December 24, 2005. On January 1, 2006, the list of the selected 21 finalists was released. Voting on these 21 potential Wonders will continue until July 6, 2007. The Official Declaration Ceremony was be held in Lisbon, Portugal on Saturday, July 7, 2007. The hour and a half ceremony that unveiled the results of the New 7 Wonders of the World world vote will be held in Portugal’s largest venue, the Estadio da Luz (not a finalist!).
The event will be a fitting extravaganza of award presentations and appearances by Jennifer Lopez, Hilary Swank, Ben Kingsley, Jose Carreras, Chaka Khan, Alessandro Safina, Joaquin Cortes, Dulce Pontes, Neil Armstrong and Cristiano Ronaldo.
The 7 NEW WONDERS OF THE WORLD are…
The Great Wall, China
Christ Redeemer, Brazil
Machu Picchu, Peru
Chichen Itzá, Mexico
The Roman Colosseum, Italy
The Taj Mahal, India
After the completion of the N7W project, the foundation will be working on two other “Wonders” projects: The 7 Wonders of the Natural World and The 7 Wonders of the Technological World, which will both be decided by global vote as well. The foundation voices that, “We as the people of the world have the opportunity to change history.” The N7W Foundation anticipates that the campaign will encourage the world’s population to participate in this spirited project and become part of their own global heritage by voting for the New 7 Wonders of the World.