Hegerburg has been magnanimous about Solveig’s question. “He came to me afterwards and was really sad that it went that way,” she told the Guardian. “I didn’t really consider it sexual harassment or anything in the moment. I was just happy to do the dance and win the Ballon d’Or.” The DJ, for his part, has issued his own sorry-if-you’re-offended apology via Twitter.

Hegerburg may recognize that it was intended as a joke, but that’s not the same thing as finding it funny. Asking a world-class pro if she knows how to twerk at the apex of her career is sexism, plain and simple.

This is the more ribald cousin of questions about who an actress may be wearing, rather than the film she is promoting, or of referring to someone as accomplished as human-rights lawyer Amal Clooney in terms of her marriage instead of her professional achievements. These remarks, whether they’re intended maliciously or otherwise, attempt to strip women of their success: You might be the world’s best football player, but we’re just here to see you shake your bum.

There’s an implicit trap in these questions, on stage, on the red carpet and in the workplace. If women go along with it—release the nudes, do the dance, make an idiot of themselves—they’re a laughing stock who won’t be taken seriously. If they call out the sexism and its perpetrator, they’re tarred as joyless and a shrew. (They won’t be taken seriously then, either.)

Both kinds of attacks distract attention away from the apparently terrifying facts of the matter: Women are winning—and they deserve to be respected for it.

🖋 Sign up for The Memo from Quartz at Work

A dispatch from the world of modern work. Learn how you can help create a productive, creative, and compassionate work culture.