I'm new to Mint though not to Linux, having started with Redhat 5.1 many moons ago.
That doesn't mean however that I'm a guru by any means.
As for myself I've worked both professionally in the IT industry, and these days privately as a "hobbyist" OEM outside of my current working hours, (non IT field).
My interest in Mint is not for me personally, but for one of my clients who is interested in migrating from MS Windows to Linux.
As such I have spent some time with them reviewing a number of 'new user friendly' distros via live CDs. Mint came out on top, primarily due to the ease of software management & system maintenance (updates), made possible by the excellent gui tools provided.
For my part I'm pleased that my client has settled on a distro which is ultimately Debian based as my distro of choice is in fact Debian (sid) for the desktop and Debian (lenny) for my file server.