We now have a Wiki entry that goes into the history of Rule 7, it's current definition, and an explanation on how to search this sub effectively. And in case people don't feel like reading the whole thing...
There are no exceptions to Rule 7. Whether you're on mobile, or search is down, or you don't feel like searching, or mods are [expletive deleted], you still need to search.
The implementation of Rule 7 was decided by the users of ELI5, not the moderators!
You can use Google to search ELI5 by adding
site:www.reddit.com/r/explainlikeimfive to your search query.
If you are contesting a post removal due to Rule 7, you must include a link to your search results.
Moderators are human beings. Please treat us as such, and we will do the same in return.
Edit notes: added the bit about including search results when contesting.
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