To say that we can only talk about etiquette on here, and nothing else, would highly change my views of this forum.
Cynthia, this is an etiquette forum. Of course it's not *all* we talk about, but it is the main thrust of the forum. There are off topic folders to talk about everything from tv/movies/books to telling us that you had a horrible day or just got a new job. (I need a Hug! and the Good News folders)
I don't think it's too much to ask that non-etiquette venty/ranty posts be kept off the main forum. I don't think it's really even all that much to ask that you keep it out of off topic unless you put it in the I Need a Hug folder.
I would be highly disappointed if people stopped talking as open and freely as we do.
Again, we're not talking about stopping "talking openly and freely." We're talking about posts like Momof2boy's post. She declared that nothing we said was going to change her mind, and then proceeded to fill her post with vitriol and bitterness. And then when she didn't get the response she desired, she came back with more of the same. *Those* are the kind of posts we're talking about.
If you feel the need to blow off steam because you've been having a rotten day, the "I need a hug" folder is there for exactly that. It's there for support. Of course, if you rant there about how you didn't get what you wanted (general you) at your wedding shower so that you could return the gifts for cash, expect to be called on it. Expect to be called on it in any thread, in any folder when you (Again, general you) cross the line, etiquettely speaking.
So, in summary. Don't vent unless you're prepared to listen to the advice you receive. Don't vent or rant in the On Topic folders about things that don't remotely relate to etiquette. Don't fill your posts with swearwords/threats/all caps, etc. and expect to be a part of this forum. That's what we're talking about here.