If you are like me, the first thing you thought when you heard that Michael Jackson had died was, "So who owns the rights to the Beatles songs now?" As of yet there appears to be no clear answer. The Cleveland Leader (my go-to newspaper in matters of Jackson) says that:
Michael Jackson arranged to give Paul McCartney the rights to the Beatles back catalog through his will according to reports published earlier this year. The pair who scored hits together in the mid-1980's with Say, Say, Say and The Girl Is Mine had been feuding for years after Jackson won the rights to the Beatles back catalog
On the other hand, that could be bullshit, and:
The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Jackson's debt was around $500 million when he died this morning. A large part of this debt was a $200 million loan secured against his biggest asset - a 50% interest in the publishing rights to his own music and 251 compositions by the world's biggest ever pop group, The Beatles.