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On-page SEO will never be dead.
No, it is still useful and powerful nowadays. People are using this kind of technique for they enjoy the effectiveness that it brings.
I totally agree with steave poster, on page seo will never stop, but Google search algorithms are constantly changing every day. So a website with spammy Meta tags and bad on-page will get it tough to rank in search engine. I would love to say that on page SEO is more difficult nowadays.