It is actually unfair for both sides:
- Other countries have to try it hard to reach the final while those five countries are automatically qualified no matter what they send.
- However, you are right, in the end, they don't get the same amount of time on stage.
- On the other hand, since 2004 two prequalified countries have won the contest: Greece in 2005 and Germany in 2010 so is no big deal, actually
Anyhow, the Big Five countries are getting what they want. This group was created in 2000 but the idea actually came out in 1996 when Germany failed to make the qualify from the preselection. I personally think that these five broadcasters are still in the ESC because of this condition and I'm pretty sure that Italy wouldn't had comeback if they didn't become part of the group. I personally don't mind this, they are not only the largest financial contributors to the contest but they also provide the larger number of audience and televotes and they also have the largest music industry of Europe.