Calling himself "generationally challenged" because he isn't on Facebook and other social media outlets, Neller also acknowledged that he and other leaders in the Marines are now studying an area they hadn't expected to learn about: what the limits of the law are when it comes to naked photos that are shared without permission.
On Monday, news broke that the Department of Defense is investigating hundreds of Marines for their possible involvement in a Facebook group called "Marines United", a secret page where male marines shared thousands of nude photos of female military members.
The Naval Criminal Investigative Service is investigating the photo sharing.
US Defense Minister Jim Mattis denounced the practice as "egregious violations of the fundamental values we uphold at the Defense Department".
"I am not going to comment specifically about an on-going investigation, but I will say this: For anyone to target one of our Marines, online or otherwise, in an inappropriate manner, is distasteful and shows an absence of respect", General Robert Neller, Commandant of the Marine Corps, said in a statement.
The report, authored by Thomas Brennan, noted that the Facebook group consists of almost 30,000 members and some of whom even posted comments on the images.
The servicemen allegedly post photographs of clothed female colleagues and ask anyone on the message board if they have any "wins" - the term used for nude photos, according to BBC.More news: Marathon Oil Corporation (NYSE:MRO) Chalking Up Volume in Session
The Facebook group was only part of the scandal, a Business Insider report Thursday found.
The 23-year-old Butner said that before she left the service in 2016 she told investigators about an online source that served "indecent photos of women from all military services, organized by name, rank and even where they were stationed..."
"We are not able to confirm that Marines are participating in the site AnonIB."
"I love the Marine Corps", she said, "but after seeing that, I wouldn't re-enlist".
Defense Secretary Jim Mattis on Friday released a statement condemning the reported sharing of nude photos by United States military personnel, saying such behavior is "unacceptable and counter to unit cohesion". And I don't know what else they've got to do. Women are the fastest growing population in the military, but many say they still struggle to be treated with respect, despite having served next to men in almost every aspect of daily military life, including combat situations. Comments thereon prove that people are asking the Marines for naked photos or "wins" that they saved after the original "Marines United" Facebook group was shut down.
"I'm kind of concerned about skylining Mr. [Thomas] Brennan because he's been threatened, which I find as disgusting and as sick as any some of this other stuff, that somebody who tried to bring this to attention would be attacked by other Marines", Neller said.
The Marine Corps has been rattled by a scandal involving a private Facebook group called "Marines United" and its surreptitious distribution of explicit images of women in the armed forces - often with obscene, misogynist commentary. "This behaviour destroys morale, erodes trust and degrades the individual", technology website The Verge quoted Captain Ryan E. Alvis of the Office of Marine Corps Communications as saying on Sunday.