NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Universal Music Publishing Group and Sony/ATV Music Publishing (SNE) have lost a bid to rewrite decades' old music royalty rules.

The U.S. Department of Justice antitrust division denied the request saying it won't make revisions to the agreements following a two-year investigation.

The terms of the agreement benefit the music listeners but also make sure songwriters are compensated.

Music publishers argued that the rise in digital music streaming services like Pandora (P) requires a modification of the rules.

The two publishers wanted the agreements modified to give publishers to option to "partially withdraw" from songwriting groups, ASCAP and BMI, to allow individual performance licenses to be negotiated directly with music streaming providers like Pandora.