The dress vs. top controversy has happened twice to me this season. I walk into a store wanting to buy a top and I leave with a dress. That's what it says on my receipt.
It's clearly generational. I go into a store and tell the salesgirl, "I would like to try on that top." She smiles and replies, "Oh, you mean the dress." To which I reply with friendly sarcasm, "Really. That's a dress?!?!"
This is the hemline of a pink halter "dress" that I recently purchased. You can see where i draw the line.