Thank you for your replies
The site running under the domain name I`m looking to purchase doesn`t seem to be operating under any form of larger, standardized "domain aggregator," as you speak of, although it shares all of the same characteristics of a site like that. It looks to me, if I had to guess, that the individual put it together themselves.
You mention that you sit on these sites until someone comes around and offers you enough money for the name. What for you, typically, is enough money?
I also saw that there is a service that will actually go out and negotiate with the individual who owns the domain name and reach an agreed price that they will sell it at. I was not thinking of using one of these at all, and merely conducting the negotiations myself. However, if these are much better for some reason, maybe that`s something I should consider.
As far as trademarking the name before going to the owner of the domain, well that definitely is a possibility. It seems as if the name for the trademark is dead, so I should be able to trademark it if I choose. The reason I didn`t want to do that, and definitely wouldn`t tell the owner I did that, is because it would seem that the more stuck on this name they know I am, the more money they would expect and squeeze out of me for it. If they know I went as far to trademark the name, they`ll also know I`m very serious about acquiring it. I want to get the name for what it`s worth to them, not how much they know/think it`s worth to me.
So I was thinking of conducting the bartering in somewhat of a deceptive manner (aka not telling them more than they need to know). Email the owner telling them I`m interested in their domain name, and tell them that I have narrowed it down to a few that I am considering as a name for a website I would like to construct--I have narrowed it down to a few, they just don`t need to know that there`s is leading the pack by far. I was then thinking that I would ask how much the domain name is worth to them, in order to help me figure out which domain name would be best for me. In other words, leave it in the hands of the domain owner to tell me how much the name is worth to them, knowing that I am considering other names and the offers they extend. If they`re interested in selling it for a sum of money, this will help keep them competitive. Also, I will compose the email in a "standardized" form, to suggest that it`s a standard email I send and merely personalize it by changing the domain name in pursuit. This, I suppose, should help convince them my position is aloof, and hopefully ensure their offer is based on what it`s worth to them.
Anyway, this is just one way I thought of going about it. I`m interesting in how you guys would normally conduct a proposal like this. Like I said, this is one of my next steps, and before I make my move I want to make sure I`m taking the right steps.
Doing what I`m doing is a large enough challenge, and when money is tight, that doesn`t really help. I have to be smart, and make sure I don`t shoot myself in the foot.
Thank you all.
I want to know, if I can live with what I know. And only that.