People just said it wasn't useful to use unless you have user generated links that you can't always keep on top of.
Disagree with this. The words in the meta keyword tag (if you even want to bother to use it) definitely do NOT need to appear on the page. The Meta keyword tag is for putting words that DON'T already appear on the page, but for which you believe it is relevant. People have mixed this up for years, but it shows why it doesn't work when you put words that are already on the page in them. (It doesn't help the page to rank higher for words when they're in the meta keyword and on the page.)
Jill, I didn't see anyone discussing penalties either just the negative relation with using no follow. That was the only reason for mentioning high PR sites using it.
Jill, as far as the keyword meta tag... You mention if you use a meta keyword tag that the keywords do not need to appear on the page. If a Meta keyword tag is used, the keywords have to appear on the page from a conversion stand point. I know this is not new to you... But user acceptance increases when the search term appears on the page so why not have them?
Also, 1st & 2nd tier keyword pages need the words in order to compete with competitors after keyword density is analyzed. Right?
Maybe I am missing something... I just know that I use meta tags for all of my pages (1st 2nd & 3rd tier keywords) have the keywords in the body sprinkled naturally and I have top rankings for all tiers. I guess I won't add the keyword tags in my new pages and sites if it doesn't matter. But I need to make sure. Has there been split testing done with and without keyword tags???