Easier to release and honestly I don't think I've ever lost a fish because of no barb.
Yes, Very easy to release. There is a reason the hook has a barb to be effective in catching. Don't think for a moment they will provide the same catch rate results. I've lost plenty of my share of fish on barbless hooks.
I've also sat next to guys before who had barbs and our group didn't. (It is the law here now on the Columbia and the tributaries) They "outfished" our group on a large scale for every hookup we had. They got their limits and left quickly. I've seen this a couple of times. We asked once "Hey, you guys using barbed hooks or something?" And the reply was "of course, we always do." Other times I've walked over and observed barbed hooks.
The reason is easier release,...not catching more fish.
just west of Camas, Washington