This article is from the Stand-up Comedy FAQ, by Steven Rosenthal and Steve Silberberg (email@example.com) with numerous contributions by others.
A. Any TOPIC is fair game for comedy. However, different circumstances
determine the topics that are appropriate. For instance, people who are
sensitive should see comedy that's billed as a clean/non-offensive show-
and the comics who agree to do that show should abide by those parameters.
Many corporate events/ private parties fit into that category and therefore
the comic's comments should reflect that.
There is also a difference between a comic discussing a particular topic in
general and picking on an audience member. A comic may do a joke that makes
handicapped people, black guys, homosexuals, ugly chicks, retards, aborted
fetuses etc., but when they apply it to a particular person in the
audience, the joke
changes from a general quip to a personal attack.. I've never been fond of
comics who harass audience members- especially if the person didn't