I agree with that. I know he is still played a fair deal, he does have the biggest selling album ever with like 7 hit singles each off both Thriller and Bad though. In the 80s and early 90s the narrative was there was Elvis, The Beatles and Jacko and everyone else was in a lower tier.
In that context his profile does seem subdued posthumously. In a way not like Freddie Mercury or Bowie or Prince who seem to be more ubiquitous and celebrated after their deaths.
Some may not have been around at the time but in 1990/91 when Freddie was dying Queen were not well regarded or constantly lauded for the Live Aid set. They were probably the least trendy band you could imagine and people pretended they didn’t like them when they really did to save face.