In a near future-tech scenario, mankind is plagued by rampant technology addiction to the point the point that it begins to threaten the overall stability of society. Tech companies have become more influential than many governing bodies to the point that no one really has the authority to meaningfully curb the trend of tech companies introducing more and more addictive patterns into their software design to maximize their market share of ad space/screen time. After many failed attempts to challenge the tech companies in courts (thanks to their incredible ability to manipulate public image), one government decides to side-step the problem by genetically enhancing its citizens to be more resistant to the addictive properties of false reward systems so that their citizens can continue to live normal healthy lives alongside their technology usage.
This civilization already genetically modifies its citizens to weed out many genetic disorders, but this is their first time doing a broad spectrum psychological modification; so, you can assume that apart from this change that humans act and think more or less like they do now.
Scope of Technology Addiction to Address
For context, technology addiction is a real world phenomenon that happens when a technology interface is designed to exploit the reward mechanisms of the human psyche. For purposes of this question I will be focusing on technologies that are designed to give false/intangible rewards that cause humans to believe we have been rewarded for a behavior without actually receiving any benefit.
Video Game Addiction
a pattern of gaming behavior (“digital-gaming” or “video-gaming”) characterized by impaired control over gaming, increasing priority given to gaming over other activities to the extent that gaming takes precedence over other interests and daily activities, and continuation or escalation of gaming despite the occurrence of negative consequences.
~ World Health Organization
This can include any gamified system that use points, badges, mood inducing sound effects and colors, or objectives to exploit the same reward systems that video games exploit. So, things like stack exchange could be included in this category even though they are not technically a "video game".
Social Media Addiction
Social media addiction is a behavioral addiction that is characterized as being overly concerned about social media, driven by an uncontrollable urge to log on to or use social media, and devoting so much time and effort to social media that it impairs other important life areas.
This can include any system that exploits the human need to feel relevant and approved by others; so, things like Blogging, Product review systems, etc. could fall into this category too.
Kinds of Technology Addiction that this does not apply to:
- Merchant Reward Point Systems: Cash Back rewards, Discount Plans, Sale incentives, etc. produce real world rewards.
- Risk Reward Systems: Online gambling, trading, auctioning, etc. Since these can potentially produce real world rewards.
- Compulsive Information Seeking: The acquisition of real world knowledge would be considered a tangible reward in this context.
- Technology Reliance: Systems that make your life meaningfully easier produce real world rewards.
- Any form of Technology Addiction that only affect persons with pre-existing OCD.
- Cybersex Addiction: ...a real orgasm is a real orgasm...
How much power do the Tech Companies Have?
Nearly the Nation's entire technology stack funnels through a trust of private tech giants. So, while the government on paper has the money and authority to launch social programs that might oppose them, it's very easy for the tech giants to subvert these programs if they don't line up with their goals. Politicians can't purchase campaign ads that go against the trust, and they can not meaningfully compete with private tech companies when it comes to distributing information to the public. About 80-90% of people trust their social media platforms more than they trust their government, completely unaware that their social media feeds are curated by algorithms designed to subvert anti-tech-trust agendas; however, most people who work in politics are at least generally aware of the problem.
The government also can not risk forcefully dissolving these companies. Even the threat to do so would causes nationwide riots.
The only tech industries the government can meaningfully control are those that have nothing to do with the distribution of information, such as the Genetic Augmentation industry.
[Science-Based] Answers based on things like Systematic Desensitization (Psychology) or Dopamine reuptake (Neurochemistry) are good. I am not looking for something vague like "when A happens people do B instead of C".
The best answer will be one that can effectively mitigate false reward based technology addiction while creating the least negative behavioral changes in regards to real world motivation systems.